holrum at hotmail.com
Tue Jul 29 23:07:34 EDT 2008
I have actually built two different GPS disciplined clepsydra...
The first one used six precision syringe pumps (basically syringes with the plungers hooked to lead screws/stepper motors). They were set up to draw colored fluid up into the syringes (HH MM SS). When the seconds syringe filled, it was dumped and the minutes syringe drew up an increment of fluid, etc. Worked very well. Certain people were rather peeved that I used several thousand dollars of their product for such a frivolity. The company president and board of directors wanted their own (but they did not get the GPS version).
The second one was an hour clock. It had four 1 liter separation funnels at the bottom, each with a different colored fluid. Every 15 minutes one funnel would be pumped into an upper funnel where its contents would be dispensed in 1 CC pulses each second by a very precision (and hideously expensive) flow meter valve into spiral tubes leading back to the original funnel. Each pulse of fluid would wind its way down the tube. After a week or so you got enough mixing of the fluids that you would have to change them to keep the colors fresh. Great fun... totally useless... I liked it... certain people did not... those that mattered did.
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