Last semester I got really into powering my fabrication projects with human power. This in turn built off a project I made a year or so ago, a hand cranked LED sign. All of these were kind of hacked together, so I look forward to approaching energy generation in a more formal context for this class.
The projects mentioned above all use DC motors to generate power, so for this week’s assignment I asked the group if we could experiment with stepper motors instead.
It wasn’t difficult at all to plug in an LED to a 5V stepper and get it to turn on. The really surprising thing was that is didn’t seem to matter not only which direction you wired the LED (which makes sense as the stepper current alternates), but even which wires you plug it into. That was very surprising to me, I look forward to discussing how that happens more in class.