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[H6X] POD

Your companion for the next Apocalypse!
AirQuality, UV, GPS, HeartRate(+O2), Thermal Cam, 21Ah 60w Charger, LEDs for days and more...

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I want this device to be a development platform for environmental sensing, warning, logging, health and everyday convenience features in a compact, rugged and sleek package with maximum battery life.

I will leave space inside for more capabilities and modding down the line.

I'm pretty much a novice at coding, dabbled in 3D graphics and other DIY stuff, but my main job is freelance Music Producer.

Features - as of June 10, 2021:

(over 25 Data Points / Features)

read about how i got the Idea and background Story here.

  • Automatic Sleep and Power Save modes
  • Error, Battery and Electronic Path Protection (Auto-Shutdown, Warnings)
  • Robust Design, some Redundant Sensors & Components, Waterproofing?
  • Upcycled MJ1 18650 Batteries and eventually sustainably sourced materials

For the first functional prototype i am staying in the Arduino and off-the-shelf realm. 
I have completed my initial research & testing and am working on the prototype build.
i am posting this to get feedback, find bugs and anyone who wants to collaborate.


Who is it for?

  • support for rural areas with no or limited access to medical monitoring instruments
  • air monitoring and temperature testing in offices and schools (for general Air Quality and Virus prevention)
  • outdoor and adventure (ie. Traveling, off-the-grid living, offline living, UV Index / Sunscreen indicator, Air Quality inside boats/cars/tents, detecting engine fumes in enclosed spaces, Compass and Location for trekking, portable high power Lamps)
  • support in case of emergency (GSM/GPS location beacon, SOS lamp signal, body health stats monitoring in case of sickness)
  • high end wireless IOT Weather, Air Quality, Monitoring and Logging Station and Lamp for the Home

Feature Ideas:

  • Sensirion SCD41 + SHT45 (replace SCD30 + SHT31) (CO2, RH, T)
  • Sensirion SGP40 (replace CCS811) (tVOC)
  • PM2.5 Particle Sensor (Sensirion)
  • Carbon Monoxide Gas Sensor
  • Flammable Gases Sensor
  • Ozone Gas Sensor
  • Water Quality Sensor
  • GSM Network Connection / 3G
  • AI for anomalous events and situational awareness (Indoor/Outdoor, environment, emergency status, health warnings)
  • programmable variable power supply (aiming at 30v, 120W - laptops, fans, coolers, car starter)
  • ECG (BioAmp EXG Pill?)
  • Geiger counter
  • UV emitters (surface sterilization)
  • Radar Sensor (speed measuring and human presence detector, Distance Measuring)
  • Long Range Walkie-Talkie Module
  • precise LUX meter (photography)
  • Stereo 24bit Sound Recorder, Spectrum Analyser, Loudness Meter
  • Movement energy generation (with electromagnets to trickle charge while walking)
  • Laser Rangefinder,  Distance Measuring (best would be over 2km)
  • HighPower Laser Emitter (SOS beacon, cats)
  • Arc Lighter (fire-starter)
  • Scale

  • 1 × ESP32 DevKit C
  • 1 × Sensirion SCD30 CO2, Temperature, Humidity
  • 1 × AMG8833 8x8 Interpolated Thermal Cam
  • 1 × PA1010D mini GPS 1x1cm ceramic antenna
  • 1 × MAX30102 Heartrate + Blood Oxygen

View all 28 components

  • [H6X] UI Video Update

    eBender07/12/2021 at 12:19 0 comments

    Progress:  66,9%      Hardware: v9       Code: a10.0

    quick video of almost the whole OS.

    * Time and Heart Rate BPM is not working correctly right now.

  • [H6X] UI Update

    eBender05/24/2021 at 03:57 2 comments

    Progress:  66,9%      Hardware: v9       Code: v9.9

    I've been working on the UI and made some progress i want to share.

    Mainly Home and Menu Screens and some minor updates.
    I realised i haven't featured the Air Quality/indirect virus detection theory
    functionality yet, that will be getting its own post soonish.

    These are actual screenshots of the display (or photos rather, haven't figured out the eSPI screenshot readRect() code yet). Some pages are still cluttered and older, and i have yet to implement smooth fonts, but it's at a good state to show and explain.

    here is what i've got:

    Read more »

  • [H6X] State of the build #4

    eBender04/28/2021 at 23:27 0 comments

    Progress:  65,6%      Hardware: v9       Code: v9.8

    Change-log

    • implemented AMG8833 8x8px Thermal Cam
    • added Button2 library for Interrupt double-click detection
    • enabled INA260 Interrupt low voltage alarm to trigger system power off through Buck converter EN pin
    • removed pull-up resistors on all I2C sensors, keeping 10k main I2C pull-ups
    • bug fixes

    Issues:

    • detecting SD unmount or error inside Loop() not working anymore
    • removed MPU9250 for AMG8833 to work (I2C addresses)


    AMG8833 Functions:

    Using Algorithm from the Adafruit AMG88xx Library.

    Screen shows:    Center Point Value, Max Value, Min Value, fps,  Interpolation Time

    • LowRes Mode      30x28 Pixels Interpolated, 12 fps 
    • HighRes Mode     120x111 pixels Interpolated, 1 fps (+Auto-Exposure)
    • Full Screen burst mode    collects the highest value out of the full array
    • Center Point burst mode  collects the highest value out of the 2 center pixels

    Button Single-Click:    Trigger Burst Measurement (small 0.49" screen shows 3-sec countdown)
    Button Double-Click:  Toggle Measurement Area (Center Point, Full Screen)

    In HighRes mode i maxed out the Resolution so the frame Rate drops to 1. The Colour Temperatures are mapped to onscreen Min and Max Temps. Kinda works like a simple exposure compensation in a normal camera. The adjusted values get passed on to the LowRes mode if switched. Default temperature scale is 22C - 33C.

    It features a Burst Mode (Averaging Mode) to get a more accurate reading with the 8 bit sensor values, by averaging 50 samples over 3 seconds. Measurement will always be taken from the highest temperature seen by the Sensors inside the selected Measurement Area (Full Screen (64px) or Center Point (2px)).

    Issue: i can't, for the life of me, figure out how to access the full color spectrum to have smooth color transitions. I tried using the eSPI colors and a conversion method, but could only get it to work by accident with smooth colors going from dark blue to purple, and dropping 6 fps. no good. Has something to do with the 16bit color mapping and how they are arranged in the array, but i don't understand how to access/map them correctly.


    more after the jump:
    Read more »

  • [H6X] State of the build #3

    eBender04/23/2021 at 17:18 0 comments

    Progress:  64,8%      Hardware: v9       Code: v9.8

    Update: Time for some pictures of Hardware implementation and UI progress:

    Prototype v9
    Layout of Battery pack, power & charging boards inside the Thermal Duct, that the empty battery slot creates.
    Components are mounted on Aluminium heatsink that goes from top to bottom with maximum exposed surfaces to the Airflow.
    There are two levels of PCBs in this design. 3x 2S 2A Chargers(?), 4x 3A voltage buck converters, INA219 + INA260, 400w PWM Controller, 2S 20A Protection/Balance Board. Hoping Air will still flow ok. 
    Also still figuring out the power path for charging.
    Loading Screen
    Loading Screen (random selection of 12 different screens), shows loading errors and reset reason
    Progress with the UI:
    It's still not very beautiful, but already does almost everything that was planned. 
    Battery Pack tinkering & Electronics Prototype
    Battery Pack tinkering & Electronics Prototype
    Home Screen displays most important Data Points
    Home Screen displays most important Sensor Data.
    The whole System has a warning Screen for critical Over/Under - Temperature, Voltage, Current, Wetness values and sets everything into Low Power / deepSleep modes.
    Phone-like Status Bar for SD card, Logging, Fan, WiFi, Battery, FPS, Lamp, time since reboot.
    Small 0.49" Screen cycles through sensor values, shows alarms and indicates charging.
    Read more »

  • [H6X] State of the build #2

    eBender04/23/2021 at 12:21 0 comments

    Progress:  61,4%      Hardware: v9       Code: v9.7

    Change-log:

    • replaced MLX90614 BCC with AMG8833 64px Thermal cam
    • added Sensirion SCD30 - CO2, Temperature, Humidity Sensor to support fairly inaccurate CCS811 & HDC1080
    • added secondary tiny 0.49" OLED screen (displays sensor & error data)
    • added additional INA260 Voltage & Current Sensor (15 Amps max)
    • added mini GPS Module in plans (not ordered yet, still researching - PA1010D ?)
    • added self-error checking/disabling for Sensors & SD reader
    • sped up code by a lot! (avg 80 fps)
    • made progress with UI/UX menu (new Debug & Info Screens, Charge Indication etc...)
    • implemented deep Sleep & low Power Modes

    Issues:

    • conflicting I2C adresses for RTC, MPU & AMG8833 (go Serial? or one has to go)
    • how to manufacture precise aluminium bends (r 1.75cm)
    • voltage still unstable bc of  janky breadboard/cables & too many components (occasional i2c errors) guessing  soldered connections and better wires will fix this

    Issues with the power Path/Charging:

    USB-C input needs 9v from wall charger to work, because i am using non-balanced 2S, 8.4v, 2A charging modules that don't boost the voltage.

    i tested multiple 2S charging boards TP5100 in parallel and i think it killed 2 of them. So charging would be limited to 1 charger with 2A max, which would take way too long (over 16h). Maybe going 2S was a bad idea, but it gives me the ability to toggle these (HW-313, 3A) voltage buck converters on and off via their enable pins. And voltage conversion differences between battery voltage and the component voltages are lower. (highest is 12v, lowest 3.3v)

    Having a balanced, protected 2S (3 terminal) buck-boost converter/charger supporting 7A with USB-C PD4.0 polling for voltage, input and output switch, would be a dream (MJ1 Batteries support 6.8A charge rate, which would take 6h30).. if my math is correct.

    I know designing a custom PCS with charging/power/protection/management features, sensors and as much as fits on it would probably be the best solution, but i don't have the expertise yet. Arduino and Alibaba modules it is for now. 

    unless someone wants to help?

    New Component / Feature Illustration:

  • [H6X] State of the build #1

    eBender01/25/2021 at 22:26 0 comments

    Progress:  42,7%    Hardware: v7       Code: v7.3

    Issues:

    • Airflow, heat management, heat expansion of materials.
    • Getting my prototyping circuit up and running again. switched to a new breadboard and wires and now all the voltages have dropped.

    no idea how to tackle the charging path. Schematic &  more Details after the Jump

    Read more »

  • First Concept Renders.

    eBender01/25/2021 at 22:08 0 comments

    This was my first version. With a hilariously complicated tray, pushed by a tiny linear Actuator, comes out to show you all its brains. Moved away from that. Also the old version was much bigger and heavier with a double 9x9 18650 Pack.

    Going for a 6x6 Hexagonal design now.

    Read more »

  • Sensor Testing.

    eBender01/25/2021 at 22:05 0 comments

    Had first successes with the CJMCU-8128 (CO2, tVOC) and MAX30102 (HeartRate), WiFi, Screen:

    Read more »

  • Proof of Concept.

    eBender01/25/2021 at 21:59 0 comments

    This is the first prototype, to give Aluminium bending and tolerances a try. Also ordered 3 different materials for the cover. Denim, and two types of faux Leather.

    Read more »

  • How the Idea found me.

    eBender01/25/2021 at 21:44 0 comments

    i had the Idea after i returned from India where i had been traveling on Foot, Train and Motorbike from North to South and back.

    Around March 2020 I was spending my time with new friends in Rishikesh, one of whom slowly got really sick, right when COVID really started in India. We questioned bringing her to the Hospital but couldnt really tell, no doctors to find and the medicine shops gave us wrong or fake antibiotics, which didn't help. So, during that time we had the need for a thermometer but couldn't find any after searching whole Tapovan. Her condition worstened and nothing helped, so after a lot of convincing and back and forth, we brought her to the Rishikesh Hospital, masked up and evading the doctors in the entrances, who were to trying to catch and test all the "Covid Tourists". We found out, after the usual India chaos, that she had a bladder infection that had started spreading to her kidneys. 
    She stayed in the hospital for 4 days, we visited. 

    That gave me this idea, what if I could build a thing that had say, Body Temperature and HeartRate monitor, a Powerbank and a Lamp. We definitely wouldn't have been so clueless and unaware of the danger that she had been in. Our friend slowly got better with the help of antibiotics. Right after that, we decided to leave from Delhi for Germany with the last Government chartered ariplane, wich we almost missed. 

    Back in Germany i started planning. Very little know how about machining coding etc. but i'm getting there, slowly but surely. 
    Going through all the available arduino sensors and now looking into industrial sensors. 
    Getting into deep rabbitholes about for example thermal conductivity of aluminium vs copper variants. 
    Trying to add functionality into every last square mm while keeping it 'minimal' and robust. 

View all 10 project logs

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Discussions

isabellaanna255 wrote 08/07/2021 at 04:47 point

I will suggest you to carry on your hard work on it  I am also working on a falconapk website project you can see here.

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Daniel He wrote 07/25/2021 at 04:03 point

Cool project!

Since it is an apocalypse companion, I would also suggest a geiger counter feature for potential nuclear winters.

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eBender wrote 07/26/2021 at 10:33 point

oh yea definitely! already looked into that, the good ones i found are pretty big and don't fit for now, unless i remove batteries.

there is a full list of more feature ideas at the bottom of this post:

https://hackaday.io/project/180257-h6x-pod-2021-hackaday-prize-entry/details

edit: now also in the details of this project page.

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polidax198 wrote 06/09/2021 at 13:30 point

This project is looking very unique I will suggest you to carry on your hard work on it  I am also working on a smokersgeek website project you can see here.

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Esteban wrote 04/26/2021 at 13:38 point

Genius design and great idea!

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eBender wrote 04/26/2021 at 13:58 point

thanks man!

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setCREATE wrote 04/25/2021 at 20:31 point

Really cool Idea! For the controller chip, have you thought of using an MC60 module? it has the SD Card, GPS, GSM, and many other features already on itself, it can save you a lot of space.

also, does this thing have a sleep mode? for like expanding the battery life to some crazy amount of time?

  Are you sure? yes | no

eBender wrote 04/25/2021 at 21:09 point

hey thanks, good suggestion! i have not seen that particular model yet, but i have considered similar modules. It is almost the perfect solution for this (plus would add GSM), but i think after the arduino phase i'm going to go one step better and design a custom pcb in the perfect hex shape with those components and better power management, i'm still pretty limited by my expertise, though. 

But next up is finishing the prototype as i have it, to test functionality, usability and feasibility.

sleep and power-saving modes are already implemented for the esp32 and most of the sensors (the ones that have an easy sleep/power-off mode in the code). Toggling deepSleep via html app and then working off of the RTC and ULP timer with configurable wakeup/sleep times. I (very loosely) estimate the battery life to be over 4 weeks on low-power/deepSleep mode with interval logging, probably longer (if its not used for device charging or lights)

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setCREATE wrote 04/26/2021 at 06:00 point

That's great, keep it going.

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