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Mouse Wheel Battery Charger?

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gizander

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Is it possible to make a (trickle?) charger for a 12V battery that runs off a mouse wheel (or several)? The battery is intended to be used to power a 70-100W TV through an inverter...
Where can small (mouse/rat-powered) generators be found (or how to make them)? Could small electric motors be used? What would the best circuit be? Is this even possible?
 

giftiger_wunsch

New Member
That's a novel idea! I'd imagine it's possible, I don't know how much power you're likely to obtain from it though. I have seen wind up torches before where winding the torch charges a small cell used to power the lights, so there's no reason why a mouse-wheel battery charger wouldn't work. It's not too dissimilar from a dynamo either, come to think of it.

By the way, I was totally lost until you mentioned rats. I thought you were planning on magically extracting energy from the wheel on your computer mouse :p
 
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gizander

New Member
haha...mouse wheels and drinking...

Hey GW,
Thanks for the reply..."You know it's time to stop drinking when everything seems to relate to computers..."...lol
Anyway, ya, I meant the actual animals that run on those wheels in cages...Any ideas on how it could be done? I was thinking of a trickle charger run off a DC motor that the rat spins with its wheel (probably several). I know the power will be low, but several rat cages can be used to boost the input to the charger...???
Might be good for a "green" cell phone or other low-power device tho...
Where might one begin with a project like this?
 

Hero999

Banned
Is it possible to make a (trickle?) charger for a 12V battery that runs off a mouse wheel (or several)? The battery is intended to be used to power a 70-100W TV through an inverter...
No, I don't think anyone's little finger is powerful enough to power even an LED, let alone a TV.:D

Where can small (mouse/rat-powered) generators be found (or how to make them)? Could small electric motors be used? What would the best circuit be? Is this even possible?
Oh you mean rodents.:D

They're a bit more powerful than your middle finger but can only output a Watt or so which will take 100 hours of charging to power a TV for one hour, assuming 100% efficiency.
 

Hero999

Banned
For short bursts yes, but the little rat isn't going to produce 1W for very long; he'll soon get tired and fall asleep.:D
 

giftiger_wunsch

New Member
Let's face it, the process of growing the food to convert solar energy into chemical energy, feeding it to a rat, getting the rat to convert the chemical energy into kinetic energy and the wheel to convert it into electrical energy to power your battery... is MUCH less efficient than simply charging the batteries using a wall supply :p
 
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marcbarker

New Member
When you say "mouse wheel" you mean this?:


Yes, just use any suitable small PM DC motor as a generator, via a blocking diode., spindle suitably geared-up as required.
 
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kpatz

New Member
Why not use a generator/dynamo that generates AC and then rectify it. Then it won't matter which direction the rodent spins the wheel. You could even mount magnets to the wheel and then put a stationary coil to generate electricity when the magnets pass by the coil.

But, in any case, you aren't going to get much juice out of it. Mice (and to a lesser degree, rats) are pretty lightweight animals, put too much resistance on the wheel and their weight won't be sufficient to turn it.

Now, make a larger wheel and stick a hyperactive toddler in, and you should be able to get several watts of power. ;)
 
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Hero999

Banned
You could use a bridge rectifier regardless of whether it's AC or DC.

The only advantage AC has to offer is it's easy to add a transformer to change the voltage.
 

tcmtech

Banned
Most Helpful Member
And many people wonder why AE doesn't get taken seriously. :(
 

audioguru

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
There was a project on the internet of a gerbil wheel powering a generator. The generator charged a Ni-Cad battery that lighted an LED dimly for a few minutes.
Absolutely useless because the power is so low.
 

Mr RB

Well-Known Member
That's a novel idea! I'd imagine it's possible, I don't know how much power you're likely to obtain from it though.
...
Exactly one Mousepower... OF COURSE. :D
 

microtexan

New Member
Mouse Power

Is it possible to make a (trickle?) charger for a 12V battery that runs off a mouse wheel (or several)? The battery is intended to be used to power a 70-100W TV through an inverter...
Where can small (mouse/rat-powered) generators be found (or how to make them)? Could small electric motors be used? What would the best circuit be? Is this even possible?
I think the PETA people will be all over you for cruelty to animals.:D:D:p
 

giftiger_wunsch

New Member
Personally I found that the human-powered torch I had was a handy idea :p a spring-loaded component on the outside fit in your hand perfectly, and drove a step-up gearbox to convert a squeeze on the torch to drive a small generator quite rapidly and charge up a small li-ion cell. The torch would last a fair length of time, and unlike a lot of similar devices where you have to actively turn a handle, you could do this with one hand and the resistance made it like a stress ball :p I used to fiddle with it idly and charge the battery at the same time :)

I would provide a photo but one day I got bored and took it apart piece by piece :eek:
 

giftiger_wunsch

New Member
I think the PETA people will be all over you for cruelty to animals.:D:D:p
Only if you also add a robot which monitors the power output and whips them when it goes below a set threshold :D Hey, there's an idea! ;) The mouse might even produce enough power to run the robot which keeps it providing the power :p
 
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