Doubling Distributor Hall Resolution

A stranger going by the handle of Red1600i was working on putting sequential fuel injection into his VW Beetle using a standard distributor with Hall sensor and an upgraded vane wheel to get accurate engine position and timing.

A+ for effort. (Both the photos are his.)

Turns out that his first attempt was by far too ambitious, with nearly 40 “teeth” machined into the vane wheel which is just 46  in diameter. Had he read a data sheet for a typical sensor and noted that the release distance between sensor and vane is just over 3 millimetres, he’d have ensured that the slots are at least 6 mm wide. Continue reading

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3D Virtual Viewer

A device with an optical display device which can determine its position in space while being moved, can change its optical output characteristic as defined by image data.

One simple implementation consists of an LCD display attached to a multi-axis inertial sensor and a storage device holding image data. As the operator moves the display device through space, the display changes so that a small viewport, corresponding to a part of the full view is visible to an observer.

Application areas for  such a device exist outside of  entertainment and amusement.

Image data that are virtual can be 3-dimensional schematics and/or digital scanned images not visible to the naked eye.  The virtual viewer is then useful tool for e.g. identifying equipment during physical maintenance by following a schematic in 3 dimensions simply by directing and moving the viewer through the space in which the equipment has been installed.

Photographic Genius – Image capture

… or not.

Photographers have long been concerned with capturing what the eye can see.

Seeing things involves much more than just the optics of the eye, but the cognitive and motor functions of the brain. So a major limitation of photography is that the eye doesn’t see everything in the picture. The eye sees only the part of the picture (perspective) on which attention is focused and adjusts the eye dynamically to optimise the visual information. Continue reading