Thesis Project: Astrometrics

I am building a  solar system model that is suspended in the air rather than sitting on the ground. It will be able to show the approx. real-time location of the planets in our solar system, and a user will be able to input a date into a mobile app that is designed to give it instructions. Using the date you enter it will calculate the positions of the planets in relation to the sun and move them into place. Unlike common orreries that are operated by hand, the planets and their movements will be controlled by a tiny computer controlling multiple motors.

Progress Documentation

My Initial track and mount designs – not print ready…

Sep 13

Redesigned track mounts on original track

Sep 25

Created my first circuit of a track mount, testing the “AccelStepper” library

Sep 27

Until I find an alternative way of supplying power, this circuit diagram illustrates what I will be needing for each track mount.

Oct 4

Original track design. The timing belt would’ve been continuous, sitting in the groove at the bottom.

Oct 9

Found a sphere that uses less material, making it lighter more cost effective to print.

Oct 18

First track mount print and component fitting. Minor printing issues…

Nov 1

Simplified track design. The timing belt will now be glued onto the track itself.

Nov 5

Comparing old and new track mount bases. Adding components for fit and design tweaking.

Nov 8

I rebuilt the mobile app because I initially lost all my data to hard-drive failure. This app is more lean and simplified at the moment to complete the task of user input.

Nov 8

Assembling laser cut tracks and rings

Nov 10

Modified the track mount design for better weight distribution  and compatibility with the simplified track design

Nov 15

Here is an image of testing the track while suspended. Here I get to really see why I need a good solution for suspension. Please ignore the make-shift “maker-space”…haha

Nov 22

Finally got more parts from rapid prototyping. There were some issues printing a globe, so I will need to work with them on finding what works.

Nov 29
Jerez BainThesis Project: Astrometrics