Around a year ago, after SpaceX Falcon Heavy first test flight, I found this amazing 3d model for Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy on Thingiverse from the user chemteacher628. I’ve decided to print it myself, so I downloaded the parts, uploaded them to Tinkercad to assemble the model virtually before printing it, to check if everything was ok. While I was checking it, I’ve decided to make a few changes. Now that Falcon Heavy has taken off again last week, I thought it was a good time to share the modifications I’ve done.
Last Thursday, the University of the Algarve organized once more its annual open day, where it showcases their curricular offers to young students from all over the regional high schools. The Electrical Engineering Department asked us to be a part of the event and to prepare a small demonstration of our own projects to help motivate and inspire these young minds.
Nixie tubes are electronic devices for displaying numerals or other information, such symbols or letters. They work under the principle called Glow Discharge. Basically, they are tubes filled with a low-pressure mix of gasses and two (or more) metal electrodes. When a voltage is applied to two of this electrodes, and such voltage exceeds a certain value called the striking voltage, the gas in the tube ionizes, becoming a plasma, and begins conducting electricity, causing it to glow with a colored light (depending on the gas filling the tube, for tubes with neon this color is red-orange).
We recently got our hands on the Dangerous Prototypes Logic Pirate, which is an inexpensive open source logic analyzer. While it’s cool to see the PCB and the entire circuitry, this is the kind of thing that you’re gonna end up carrying it with you a lot, since it’s a useful tool, therefore our first thought was that it needed a proper enclosure to protect it from the rough environment that is the tool kit! And, since we have a LulzBot 3D printer, why not design a cool looking case that we can use.