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Regenerative Automatic Door Opener
For Improved Workplace Safety
Mark Bernacki, Ben Fagan, Mike MacLeod, Matt Van Wieringen
Figure 1 Regenerative Automatic Door Opener
Research Question / Workplace Problem
To develop a means for harnessing and subsequently storing the mechanical energy generated by a person opening and closing a door so that the energy can later used by a person wishing to open the door automatically. The goal is to eliminate the electrical connection between a standard automatic door opening device and the electrical distribution system in order to conserve energy and improve safety in the event of a power outage or fire, which would otherwise render the power assisted opening of the door unuseable, trapping people relying on this technology inside.
Elderly, handicapped, landlords/building owners
There is an inherent need to improve the safety and energy consumption of private and public buildings. To do so new methods for conserving and storing otherwise wasted energy must be developed. Be capturing some of the energy required to open and close a door manually in the form of a compressed gas we can effectively cut all ties to the existing electrical system and simplify the automatic door opener by removing costly electrical components. In doing so we can provide safe, reliable access into and out of buildings even in the event of a power failure or fire, which cuts the electrical power to the building. The device is also useful in spark-less and other hazardous environments that cannot run the risk of using potentially dangerous electrical components.
Methods / Approach
To develop a solution to the workplace problem presented above we have followed a standard engineering design process.
1. Define the problem
2. Brainstorm Potential Solutions
3. Evaluate Selected Solutions
4. Refine best concept through mathematical modelling/analysis
5. Develop Prototype
By way of this method we were able to develop a fully functional prototype that produced results in support of our initial analysis.
Diagram / Graphs / Pictures
Findings / Evaluation
Through extensive testing of our prototype we found that our device was capable of storing enough energy to prove reliable and safe in a variety of settings such as: shopping malls, hotels, other large buildings. It was efficient in its ability to convert store and reuse the mechanical energy from manual door openings and requires no electrical components or connections.
We also were able to determine a series of improvements for the device which are in the process of being implemented in a second prototype with the hopes of it being ready for market in the near future.
Dr. Remon Pop-Iliev, NSERC GMCL Chair