Thank you HAD for allowing me to be in the finals! Truly a shock, a thrill, and an honor. Ever since the announcement I have been non-stop working to continue the development and testing where I left off on the last video. I only bit of time to write some project logs as I'm waiting for glue to dry.
From where I left off... The first order of business was testing the two stage wet scrubber design with a large source of sub-micron particles. I'd like to thank the HAD community and my friends for providing me many great ideas on how to test my machine cheaply and how to detect sub micron particles --namely the use of smoke detectors as a cheap particle detector was simply brilliant.
The first thing I bought were three smoke detectors two ionizing type and one photoelectric type. They were very cheap!
My original intent was to probe inside to get a voltage reading from the photo or ionizing particle detectors but I soon found this was unnecessary.
I needed to find a source of sub micron particles to test my machine that wasn't too dangerous. My friend suggested I use nano powder zinc dioxide that could be sourced online to make DIY sun creen but the thought of shooting nano-powder everywhere didn't seem safe at all --even with a resperator.
Another friend gave me three commando smoke grenades to test my machine with!
This is an all or nothing kind of test! I was going to save these babies when I got my machine finally working because if I set this off in my garage and the filter didn't work, I'd have a lot of explaining to do to my wife and neighbors... and fire department.
Luckily as I was walking through the department store, a Halloween store opened up. Then something clicked with me. I can use a fog machine!
Fog machines produce a huge quantity of sub micron particles (smoke) and it is also safe to use and breath. I bought a fog machine and quickly went home to test my machine.
I filled the fog machine with fog juice, let it warm up, then shot it directly into the input of my two stage wet scrubber. What happened next was, well, exciting.
Not only did my wet scrubber did basically nothing to filter any of the smoke, it filled my entire lab with smoke and set off all the smoke detectors that I just bought all at once including the one built into my lab. I ran around frantically trying to turn off all the smoke detectors. As I opened my garage, a huge smoke cloud went outside. Luckily none of my neighbors noticed.
So it appears that the electrospray ionization effect wasn't nearly as great enough as I expected. I was quite sad that this did not work as I planned. I realized the scale and implementation was a bit off. I needed much more surface area and a lot more corona to sufficiently ionize the particulate laden air.