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$1,379 pledged of $70,000 goal
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By Electricity From Air
$1,379 pledged of $70,000 goal
backers

What is a prototype?

A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:

Proof of Concept

Explorations that test ideas and functionality.

Functional Prototype

Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.

Appearance Prototype

Looks like the final product, but is not functional.

Design Prototype

Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.

Production Prototype

Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.

7f790516c467809545cc6d50417fbf0c original

Prototype Gallery

These photos and videos provide a detailed look at this project’s development.

About this project

This device will surprise you 

Simple.

Stand Alone.

Electric Generator.

The Size of a Football.

Inexpensive Modular Units.

Powered 100% by Shape Memory Titanium Exposed to Normal Air Temperature Changes.

Please Read The Last One Again.

Environmentally Safe.

No Batteries Needed.

Maintenance Free.

Closed Loop.

Continuous.

Scalable.

A Few Hundred Dollars to Own One.

Delivered.

These two seemingly unrelated engineering sciences combine to generate serious, continuous, Electricity from Air.

WELCOME!

Please stay for a bit and take a look at our videos and this campaign.

We absolutely guarantee that you have never seen another device like this.

This links to our EFA website.
This links to our EFA website.

  

ELECTRICITY FROM AIR

This campaign will enable you to own a new kind of stand alone thermal electric generator, out-of-the-box, or in a flexible modular maker kit.

With many options in this campaign, it is designed to be fun, practical, and useful.

Our "Electricity From Air" (EFA) Thermal Generators (Patents Pending) are powered fully by small changes in air temperature that cause the repeated piston-like actions of advanced shape-memory titanium alloy rods.

These electrical generators are really cool, and their function when explained to your friends is jaw-dropping, but our Mission is actually quite serious as we are career Nitinol Optimization Scientists with a plan to help the poor attain life-changing electricity. 

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The daily changes in air temperature in any place or conditions will make our highly trained Shape Memory Titanium Rods transform continually, which is easily enough energy to generate continual stand alone electricity. 

HOW DOES IT WORK?

Here is a walk through of a working EFA prototype that was laid out in one of the many configurations that you may build with our modular kits.  

Note that the components you will receive are far more advanced than this prototype, but for the purpose of this tour by our founder, Joe Kellogg, this example is useful.

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A CARTOON.  THEN SOME FIELD DEMOS.

Here is an animated video that examines how the device works, illustrating the Nitinol transformation process and the functionality of the Harvesting Module, the Accumulator, and the Generation Module.

These easily integrated modules offer many configuration options.

PROTOTYPES & FIELD TESTS 

Here are some of our 2014-2016 prototypes in action in a field far away from our lab.

Please note that these generators lit up the LED lights from scratch, including pressurizing the accumulator with Nitinol power only.

(We offer a Nitrogen Kit as an option that will perform your initial pressurizations in seconds).

There was a demo in the video above that was done in the dark.  That prototype also cycled up from a cold start. 

ENGINEERING FOR ENGINEERS.

The next image shows our Maker Module's key components in their current form. They are: Hydraulic Motors, Generation Modules, Harvesting Modules (with fully trained Nitinol Rods), and Accumulator Tanks.

Our Modular Maker Kits also include a substantial package with all of the Rubber Tubing, Valves, Lines, Brackets and other hardware that enable a variety of configurations.

They will arrive packed with primary modules and also dozens of professional laboratory grade support and construction parts & tools.

Each Kit starts with 6ft of high grade rubber tubing, which performs perfectly in the units.  We also offer optional stainless steel tubing (that arrives with a tube cutter, tube bender, flaring kit and & crimping kit to craft your own lengths!)  It is that kind of engineering fun.

The Modules, brackets, tubing and other assembly parts will be awesome in our first round shipments to you all in September. (Far better than shown in our test units).  The assembled devices and the basic design will be an improved version of this model.

EFA Standard Configuration
EFA Standard Configuration

ENDLESS MODULAR CONFIGURATIONS 

There are many options to inspire your creative applications.

We will establish a forum for owners to share and learn from EFA HQ and each other.

MODULAR DESIGN FLEXIBILITY.

Think of EFA as three independent sections that may be assembled in a single unit or completely separated from each other.

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The First Section is the Harvesting Module. 

The Harvesting Module is a narrow mounted bracket with the Nitinol and the Cylinder mechanism that pressurizes the system.

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The Second Section is the Accumulator. 

The Accumulator is a steel tank that is customized inside to hold the pressurized plant oil.  There is also a reservoir that manages the oil recycling from the Generation Module.

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The Third Section is the Generation Module.

  The Generation Module is the device that turns pressurized plant oil into useful electricity.  It includes the Hydraulic Motor, Electric Generator, Multi-meter, Pressure Gauge, and Electricity Release Mechanism.

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As a result, there is extensive flexibility available for Modular Maker's Kit owners.

  • You may separate the Harvesting Modules that collect energy from the Generation Modules that store energy and convert it to electricity.
  • You may integrate multiple units to increase power, or experiment with larger and more powerful shape memory titanium rods & wire, and larger energy storage modules as our development continues.
  • You may customize units from the maker kits into a vast number of configurations that will each provide viable functionality.
  • You may integrate the Modules with your own tools, or we provide a series of custom EFA Tool Kits from basic to a comprehensive Tool Kit that will enable your substantial custom field projects in remote locations.
  • Both our Modular Maker Kits and our Pre-Assembled EFA Generators may easily be integrated and extended, and will integrate with new EFA modules and options as they are released in our next campaigns and directly.

 

 

WHAT IS NITINOL? 

Here is an example of our Nitinol in action in the aerospace industry, powering the HCT Cube Satellite deployment system.

Titanium and Nickel combine to create NiTi (The alloy Nitinol).  

Nitinol is harder than steel, yet it powerfully changes shape whenever the temperature around it passes any number we set.

It changes atomic state, contracting (returning to the programmed shape) when it gets warm and it relaxes, softening as temperatures cool below the programmed transformation temperature.

As an example, some EFA rods are programmed to piston (hard) when the temperature rises to 70F.

After the rod transforms, pressurizing a hydraulic cylinder, EFA Harvesting Modules have a spring that immediately resets the Nitinol whenever the air touching it drifts back a few degrees.

This cycle repeats for each rod with this programming, for decades.  They just keep transforming, every time their particular 3 degree temperature range is passed. 

The heat required for Nitinol to transform may also be generated with electricity or industrial waste heat (or cold).

We do not use batteries in EFA generators.

Our lab's combined expertise in shape memory alloy optimization and hydraulics is the coincidence that enabled this eight Patent (pending) invention.  Innovations in both were required to create this device.

We have designed and installed hydraulics in these units that store the power which is then converted into electricity, all within the stand-alone device.

It is a closed-loop system. Not a drop of the plant oil ever exits the system during decades of maintenance free operation.

NITINOL RESEARCH IS WHAT WE DO

There is a lot of research behind this.  We have an established Nitinol optimization lab, USDA & NIFA Funding, 4 years invested, several successful stages of development, and a progression of working lab units.

Our EFA research has been funded in part by the USDA and NIFA.
Our EFA research has been funded in part by the USDA and NIFA.

Nitinol is not expensive.  

Research is expensive.

Nickel and Titanium are readily available, and we are experts in optimizing it.  

We have spent thousands of hours optimizing Shape Memory Titanium Alloys, and using our new knowledge to develop this modular alternative-energy solution that fits all critical global need criteria and has the potential for far more.

YOUR RENEWABLE ENERGY ADVENTURE 

The purpose of this, our first Kickstarter Campaign, is to enable us to go into production on our well designed Modular Electricity From Air Kits as described herein.

We have built many fully functional prototypes, and followed a gradual process of development to arrive at this modular design that is ready for home and industrial use as a working proof of concept.

The Standard EFA Configuration May Hold up to 20 Active Nitinol Rods.
The Standard EFA Configuration May Hold up to 20 Active Nitinol Rods.

This initial Out-of-the-Box unit will charge a cell phone. It is designed to easily provide 1 Watt at 5.0 Volts. (quite a useful bit of off-grid power). A basic "Standard" configuration includes 3 Nitinol Rods.  You may add more Nitinol Harvesting Modules to generate more power as you like. 

The system will scale in many ways.

The ultimate answer as to how much power will be attained from these modular generator kits is in your hands.

As a single Generator may have 20 Nitinol Rods installed, and multiple units may easily be integrated together, your modification options, configurations, and applications are limitless.

We will be sure you receive extremely high quality modules.

The fun part is up to you.

ELECTRICITY FROM AIR - R & D

We are Kellogg's Research Labs of Hudson, New Hampshire.   Here is a brief video, introducing our EFA development lab.

The tools and devices shown in this Lab Tour video have notes describing a few of the many tests we perform to design and build our EFA units.

WHY KICKSTARTER? 

This campaign will enable us to go from our series of working lab prototypes and modular test units, to upgrade and release these efficient new modular maker kits. 

We are very happy to enable EFA experimentation among those who study alternative and renewable energy.  We welcome engagement with explorers & pioneers, makers & developers, IoT experts, and all others to install and use our small, off-grid electric generators, so we may learn from your projects.

We have a long way to go with EFA, but we have come far so we know what the journey is like.

We have been out in fields for days and have tested plenty of units successfully.  Now that we have reached a number of important development goals, releasing these devices and modules will enable many more field experiments by you (and us). 

With our 2017 EFA resources, we are completely focused on improving and perfecting each component for the Devices and Kits you will receive in September. 

As soon as we reach our campaign funding minimums, that effort goes into hyper-drive.

We will provide continual updates as the campaign progresses, sharing design improvements, and the final module details & diagrams. (e.g. We are improving our hydraulic motor performance before September)

NITINOL:  PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE    

Our next-gen research is progressing very well too.  This Modular Unit will integrate and scale easily with the coming releases that the funding of this project will enable.  

We have 65w models testing in our lab that will power a blender!  So far those are powered by industrial heat, and are deep in testing.  We will always be using what we learn to increase power output in the Nitinol that will power your units as a consequence.

We see order of magnitude increases in power in the years ahead, reaching megawatt and then grid level power well within a decade from here.  This technology scales very smoothly so far.

Your support and participation makes it possible for us to learn much more, much faster.

Your use cases in many geographies & conditions, will provide our forum with temperature, performance, and other data that is very important to our R & D.

KRL/EFA Headquarters in Hudson, New Hampshire
KRL/EFA Headquarters in Hudson, New Hampshire

Lots of folks message daily about the desire for new Renewable and Alternative Energy. You might be surprised how time consuming it is to play "show and tell" and move ahead in this arena.   

With something like this that is totally off the beaten path, one clear way to progress is for us to deliver lots of working generators to happy users, and begin to really help people and make a difference.  Your use of our device will play a key role in this, our first campaign.

We are able to stake our reputation on the fact that we have this right for this first release.  We have met with representatives and executives of a number of organizations in order to learn how we may best make a difference.  

The research we have done is complex, time consuming, and difficult.

The function of the devices themselves is surprisingly simple.

We have done all we can to make it economical for you or your organization to give it a try. 

Thank you for any and all support, from those receiving a Sticker or Newsletter Subscription to those awaiting Expanded Mega Packs with the Nitrogen Kit.

YOUR PARTICIPATION AND DEVICE USE HELPS OUR MISSION TO PROVIDE NEEDED ELECTRICITY TO THE FAR ENDS OF THE EARTH.

We are volunteering and donating resources to benefit orphan children at BanglaHope, as a part of our next release.

One of the BanglaHope wells that we aim to automate.
One of the BanglaHope wells that we aim to automate.

 We are honored to volunteer for this fine International charity agency and have such a worthy testing site for our next generation of Nitinol powered generators. 

Take a look at BanglaHope.org. Imagine these classrooms and bedrooms with fans and lights that run for decades at no cost to the facility. Today BanglaHope has a tiny bit of electrical infrastructure that is very expensive yet unreliable. Many of their structures have no electricity.

NITINOL & GLOBAL ELECTRICITY

Bangladesh is one example of a vast global challenge. Remote communities all over the world have a significant need for inexpensive, stand alone electricity that requires no batteries, and is long-term low maintenance.

Working a Field in Bangladesh. Image from BanglaHope.org
Working a Field in Bangladesh. Image from BanglaHope.org

 Installing a simple continuous power source that runs untouched for decades, and safely powers basic lighting, water pumps, ceiling fans and other small appliances, would be a life changing event for billions of families in our global community. 

Providing this solution is our core mission at EFA.

Billions are poor and live off the grid.   Image from BanglaHope.org
Billions are poor and live off the grid. Image from BanglaHope.org

PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT AND HELPING THE POOR ARE INTERTWINED AT EFA. 

Our friends at BanglaHope run an orphanage, numerous schools and a medical facility in Bangladesh. We have learned a lot about the need for basic electricity from the challenges faced by these hard working volunteers.

Electricity in these remote schools will change lives.  This is a BanglaHope.org school.
Electricity in these remote schools will change lives. This is a BanglaHope.org school.

BanglaHope has enabled us to set up our next generation of EFA Generators in their off-grid schools and in the orphanage so we may start making a difference where it is needed most. 

Your participation in this campaign, in particular your ownership and testing of our first modular generators, will enable us to complete the development and installation of over 200 of our next-gen 65w mini-units that will power BanglaHope school and orphanage ceiling fans & water pumps for decades.

 

  • Nitinol was discovered by the US Navy in the 1960's and has been undergoing constant research ever since.  Our parent company, Kellogg's Research Labs supplies specialized Nitinol to many government agencies.

  • Many Nobel Laureates have experimented with Nitinol.  Lawrence Livermore Labs in Berkeley have been experimenting with it actively since the 1970's.

  • Nitinol is widely considered to be one of the least corrosive alloys ever discovered.  You may throw your rods in the ocean for 1,000 years and they will look the same when recovered.

  • The maintenance interval for an EFA unit is expected to be 25 years.  At that point you will need to simply change the rapeseed oil.  The Nitinol itself may well continue transforming for 100 years (or longer).  Even when it does eventually become less efficient, we can replace and recycle it.  Replacement rod prices will fall, not rise as we are able to produce more.  What is $20 now will be less than half that in a few years.

  • Our Lab test EFA units are very durable! We already tested one with a 12 gauge shotgun at point blank range last year.  It took off some of the paint you see on the Accumulator Tank in the videos, but the device continued running like it was nothing.  We will create a video repeating that demo with this newest model soon.

  •  
  • The Titanium & Nickel combination itself has no shape memory behavior.  Only after complex heat and rolling techniques are employed does the shape memory transformation ability come to life.

  • In case you are allergic to Nickel, please know that Nickel-Titanium is food & body safe.  It is already saving lives as it is used in heart stents all over the world. A full 30% of our work is for the medical sector.  As a comparison, your stainless steel silverware leaches nickel way more than our Nitinol does.

  • Nitinol saves people's lives in the medical device arena every day as it is able to be installed near the human heart without rejection or adverse effects.

  • Our EFA Units LOVE the water!  Let them play in the rain. Put them on ocean buoys.  Condensation makes it easier to reach the tightly programmed transformation temperatures that each Nitinol Rod requires, as does exposure to the wind and elements. As Nitinol is vastly stronger than steel, it will keep on changing shape no matter what it is exposed to.  Try underwater, or partially buried.  The options are extensive.

  • Nitinol has a personality much like a living thing.  It does not like to be told what to do.  It really loves to change shape once it is programmed and will always seek out ways to do so if it can.  This type of Nitinol has a stubborn personality. It performs best when allowed to do what it wants to do, rather than being told what to do. Our devices are designed and made to accommodate this.

  • Nitinol is a Metal that, depending on the type, transforms its shape thousands (or millions) of times with force measured in tons per square inch.

  • Take a look at this video of a simple 0.5mm Nitinol Wire being dipped in warm and cool water.  This video is in real time (not sped up).  Note that the 3mm rods in this campaign have over 50 times as much metal as this wire and will be MUCH more powerful.

Note that we did edit out out a few dead-air moments. The video and transformations are all real time.

Some interesting Research References.

Adharapurapu, Raghavendra R. et al. Influence of Cold Work and Texture on the High-Strain-Rate Response of Nitinol. Materials Science & Engineering A, 2010.

Ahn, Kyoung Kwan and Nguyen, Bao Kha. Position Control of Shape Memory Alloy Actuators Using Self Tuning Fuzzy PID Controller. International Journal of Control, Automation, and Systems, 2006.

ASTM Standard F2004-05: Standard Test Method for Transformation Temperature of Nickel-Titanium Alloys by Thermal Analysis.

ASTM International, 2010. Ashbez, K. H. G. “Representation of Martensitic Transformation in Shape Change Space, the Nature of Internal Stress Retained During SM Transformation, and the Operational Performance of a Simple Nitinol Engine.” Proceedings on the Nitinol Heat Engine Conference. Naval Surface Weapons Center, 1978.

ASTM Standard F2005-05: Standard Terminology for Nickel-Titanium Shape Memory Alloys. ASTM International, 2010.

ASTM Standard F2082-06: Standard Test Method for Determination of Transformation Temperature of Nickel-Titanium Shape Memory Alloys by Bend and Free Recovery. ASTM International, 2006.

ASTM Standard F2516-07E2: Standard Test Method for Tension Testing of Nickel-Titanium Superelastic Materials. ASTM International, 2007.

ASTM Standard F2633-07 Standard Specification for Wrought Seamless Nickel-Titanium Shape Memory Alloy Tube for Medical Devices and Surgical Implants. ASTM International, 2007.

Banks, Ridgway. Linear Output Nitinol Engine. US Patent #4,563,876. January 14, 1986.

Bernal, Laura Isabel Barbero. Cyclic Behavior of Superelastic Nickel-Titanium and Nickel-Titanium-Chromium Shape Memory Alloys: A Thesis. Georgia Institute of Technology, 2004.

Banks, Ridgway M. Single Wire Nitinol Engine: US Patent 4,450,686. United States Patent and Trademark Office, 1984.

Banks, Ridgway M. “The Banks Engine: Past, Present and Future.” Proceedings on the Nitinol Heat Engine Conference. Naval Surface Weapons Center, 1978.

Bidaux, J. E., et al. “Active Modification of the Vibration Frequencies of a Polymer Beam Using Shape Memory Alloy Fibers.” Third International Conference on Intelligent Materials: Third European Conference on Smart Structures and Materials. The International Society for Optical Engineering, 1997.

Bidaux, J. E. “Vibration Frequency Control of Composites Using the R-Phase Transformation of NiTi Alloys.” Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies. The International Organization on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies, 1997.

Bhattacharya, Kaushik. Microstructure of Martensite: Why It Forms and How It Gives Rise to the Shape Memory Effect. Oxford University Press, 2004.

Chanduszko, Andrzej. “Determination of Nitinol Transition Temperatures Using a Dynamical Mechanical Analyzer.” SMST-2000: Proceedings on the International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technology. The International Organization on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technology. DesRoches, Reginald, et al. Cyclic Properties of Superelastic Shape Memory Alloy Wires and Bars. Georgia Institute of Technology, 2005.

Duerig, Thomas, et al. Nitinol. ASM International, 2012. Duerig, T. W. and Pelton, A. R. “An Overview of Superelastic Stent Design.” SMST-2001: Shape Memory Materials and Its Appications. Trans Tech Pubications, Inc., 2002.

Ford, D. S. and White, S. R. Thermomechanical Behavior of 55Ni45Ti Nitinol. Acta Materialla, 1996.

Ginell, W. S., et al. “One Horsepower Thermoturbine Nitinol Engine.” Proceedings on the Nitinol Heat Engine Conference. Naval Surface Weapons Center, 1978.

Hall, E. O. Twinning and Other Diffusionless Transformations in Metals. Butterworth Publishing, 1954

Hayashi, Shunichi, et al. Room Temperature Functional Shape Memory Polymers. Plastics Engineering, Society of Plastics Engineers, 1995.

Gall, K., et al. Internal Stress Storage in Shape Memory Polymer Nanocomposites. Applied Physics Letters, 2004.

Jackson, C. M. et al. Nitinol-55—The Alloy With a Memory: Its Physical Metallurgy, Properties and Applications. NASA-SP 5110, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Washington, DC, 1972.

Kauffman, George B. and Mayo, Isaac. The Story of Nitinol: The Serendipitous Discovery of the Memory Metal and its Applications. The Chemical Educator, Springer, 1996.

Kim, J. I. and Miyazaki, S. “Effect of Low Temperature Aging on the R-Phase Transformation of a Ti-50.9at% Ni Alloy.” Shape Memory Alloys and Its Applications: Proceedings of the International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies and Shape Memory Materials (SMST-SMM 2001). Trans Tech Publications, Ltd., 2002.

Kutlucinar, Iskender. Heat Converter Engine Using a Shape Memory Alloy Actuator. US Patent #6,226,992 B1. May 8, 2001.

Lagoudas, Dimitris C. Shape Memory Alloys: Modeling and Engineering Applications. Springer, 2008.

Lei, Xu. The Optimization of Annealing and Cold Drawing in the Manufacture of the Ni-Ti Shape Memory Alloy Ultra-Thin Wire. International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology, 2011.

Lendlein, A. and Langer, R. Biodegradable Elastic Shape Memory Polymers for Potential Biomedical Applications. Science, May 2002. Leng, Jinsong and Du, Shanyi. Shape-Memory Polymers and Multifunctional Composities. CRC Press, 2010.

Leng, Jinsong, et al. Electroactive Thermoset Shape Memory Polymer Nanocomposite Filled with Nanocarbon Powders. Smart Materials and Structures, IOP Publishing, 2009.

Li, Kam W. Power Plant System Design. John Wiley & Sons Inc., 1985. Li, Yao T. Nitinol Engine for Low Grade Heat: US Patent 4,302,938. United States Patent and Trademark Office, 1981.

McCartney, J. M., et al. An Experimental Study of the Superelastic Effect in a Shape-Memory Nitinol Alloy Under Biaxial Loading. Mechanics of Materials, 2003.

Mehta, A., et al. On the Electronic and Mechanical Instabilities in Ni50.9Ti49.1. Materials Science & Engineering A, 2004.

Melton, K. Engineering Aspects of Shape Memory Alloys. Butterworth-Heinemann, LTD., 1990.

Morgan, N. B. Medical Shape Memory Alloy Applications—The Market and Its Products. Materials Science & Engineering A, 2004.

Nam, T. H. et al. “The B2-B19-B19’ Transformation in a Ti-44.7Ni-5Cu-0.3Mo Alloy.” Shape Memory Alloys and Its Applications: Proceedings of the International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies and Shape Memory Materials (SMST-SMM 2001). Trans Tech Publications, Ltd., 2002.

Neurohr, Anselm J. and Dunand, David C. Mechanical Anisotropy of Shape-Memory NiTi with Two-Dimensional Networks of Micro-Channels. Acta Materialia 59, 2011.

Orlando, Carl. Trigger Circuit: US Patent 4,002,954. United States Patent and Trademark Office, 1977.

Otsuka, K. and Wayman, C. M. Shape Memory Materials. Cambridge University Press, 1999.

Rice, C. and Sczerzenie, F. “Design and Performance of a Functional Af Tester.” SMST-97 Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies. SMST, 1997.

Ryhanen, Jorma. “Biocompatability of Nitinol.” SMST-2000: Proceedings on the International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies. SMST, The International Organization on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technology, 2001.

Saigal, Anil and Fonte, Matthew. Solid, Shape Recovered “Bulk” Nitinol: Part I—Tension-Compression Asymmetry. Materials Science & Engineering A, 2011.

Saigal, Anil and Fonte, Matthew. Solid, Shape Recovered “Bulk” Nitinol: Part II—Mechanical Properties. Materials Science & Engineering, 2011.

Sanders et al. Nitinol Spinal Instrumentation and Method for Surgically Treating Scoliosis. US Patent & Trademark Office, Patent # 5,290,289, 1994.

Sengupta, Arkaprabha and Papadopoulos, Panayiotis. Constitutive Modeling and Finite Element Approximation of B2-R-B19’ Phase Transformations in Nitinol Poloycrystals. Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering, 2009.

Sergueeva, A. V. Structure and Properties of Amorphous and Nanocrystalline NiTi Prepared by Severe Plastic Deformation and Annealing. Materials Science & Engineering A, 2003.

Shaw, J. A. Tips and Tricks for Characterizing Shape Memory Alloy Wire: Part 1—Differential Scanning Calorimetry and Basic Phenomena. Experimental Techniques, 2008.

Song, C. et al. “Thermal Modelling of a Shape-Memory Alloy Fixator for Minimal-Access Surgery.” SMST-2001: Shape Memory Materials and Its Appications. Trans Tech Pubications, Inc., 2002.

Song, G., et al. Applications of Shape Memory Alloys in Civil Structures. Engineering Structures, 2006.

Takaoka, S. et al. “Applications and Development of Shape-Memory and Superelastic Alloys in Japan.” SMST-2001: Shape Memory Materials and Its Appications. Trans Tech Pubications, Inc., 2002.

Tice, Neil. Thermal Engine Capable of Utilizing Low-Temperature Sources of Heat. US Patent #8,522,545 B2. September 3, 2013. Uchil, J. Effect of Thermal Cycling on R-Phase Stability in a NiTi Shape Memory Alloy. Materials Science & Engineering A, 2002.

Volk, Brent, Whitley, Karen. Characterization of Shape Memory Polymers. NASA Research and Technology Directorate, Mechanics of Structures and Materials Branch, 2007.

Wu, M. H., et al. “What is the Big Deal About the Af Temperature?” SMST-2006: Proceedings of the International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies. ASM International, 2006.

Wu, Ming H. and Schetky, L. McD. “Industrial Applications for Shape Memory Alloys.” SMST-2000: Proceedings on the International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies. SMST, The International Organization on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technology, 2001.

Wu, Tony and Wu, Ming H. “NiTi-Nb Plugs for Sealing High Pressure Fuel Passages in Fuel Injector Applications.” SMST-2000: Proceedings on the International Conference on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technologies. SMST, The International Organization on Shape Memory and Superelastic Technology, 2001.

Yoshida, Eiichi, et al. Micro Self-Reconfigurable Modular Robot Using Shape Memory Alloy. Mechanical Engineering Laboratory, AIST, MITI, Japan.

 

Risks and challenges

We have not said much about the money, but like most research labs, we have lived for years under the banner that reads "No bucks? No Buck Rogers". Every lab has tight limits regarding how much it can spend on new projects with money from core work.

Our biggest risk by far is not reaching needed campaign goals to proceed. Although we have a lot of great friends & clients of the lab following our progress and showing a lot of support for EFA, we know it is a big risk that at least hundreds of backers must join for this to work.

It is scary to step into this void of uncertainly, but the $70k minimum is a serious number as that is the minimum required to produce the modules to the professional laboratory standards that we insist on. We hope we get there.

Every dollar above the minimum is also extremely important for next-Gen funding. We will need a pretty fancy Electron Microscope, and other six-figure devices soon. We will need to raise $350k to set aside enough to complete the devices for Bangladesh.

We have worked diligently to bring this alternative energy solution from the drawing board in 2013 to our 2017 ability to deliver these first kits to users, and provide needed Support for the devices that you will install.

Although all projects carry some risk of production delays, we have a track record of on-time delivery to hundreds of clients, and are very confident that we will continue that precision in this campaign.

If for any reason there is a delay, we promise to provide constant updates. We consider this very unlikely to occur as our supply chain is well established on an industrial scale. We are 100% ready for this, or we would not hit the green light.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Your Question: Answered by our Founders

    We are happy to support your Nitinol Electricity Experiments and installs. This level of backing enables you to pose a question to our founding engineers. Whether to assist in solving a technical goal, or just to provide background, we will respond promptly to your Reward Inquiry.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    2 Pack of Generation Modules

    Here is a pack of 2 extra Generation Modules with brackets, and all other attachment hardware required to add it to your EFA Generator.

    Our Retail Prices will be $25 each. We are discounting this 3-Pack by $10 as a thank you for your participation in this campaign.

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    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    The Magic of Nitinol Sample Pack

    Discover the other-worldly behaviors of Nitinol with this package of custom Shape Memory Alloy lab samples. Your friends, family and students will be shocked to see these rare and unusual samples perform.

    You will receive a pack of our coolest lab samples with a retail value far greater than $45. We will include instructions on how to use and demonstrate these samples for years of fun.

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    Pledge $49 or more About $49

    3 Pack of Harvesting Modules

    Just what you need to generate more power per unit. Here is a pack of 3 extra Nitinol Loaded Harvesting Modules with bracket, and all other attachment hardware required to add it to your EFA Generator.

    We have these Harvesting Modules programmed to cover Winter, Spring, and Hot Summer temperature ranges. Please let us know which you would like in our follow up survey.

    Our Retail Prices will be $20 each. We are discounting this 3-Pack by $11 as a thank you for your participation in this campaign.

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    Pledge $55 or more About $55

    3 Questions: Answered by our Founders

    We are happy to support your Nitinol Electricity Experiments and installs. This level of backing enables you to pose three questions to our founding engineers. Whether to assist in solving a technical goals, or just to provide background or context, we will respond promptly to your Reward Inquiries. This tier requires you to ask all three questions at the same time.

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    Pledge $63 or more About $63

    3 Quarts of Hydraulic Plant Oil

    In case you need additional oil to pressurize over the course of your setups and experiments, here is a pack of 3 extra quarts.

    It is fully biodegradable EFA rapeseed oil.

    This campaign will enable new safe sealed 1 quart packages, which will be $26 per quart after this campaign.

    We are discounting it $5 a quart as a reward tier!

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    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    EFA Maker's Tool Kit

    This parts package includes an EFA "Maker's Tool Kit".
    It includes:

    1 Pressure Gauge
    1 EFA Tube Cutter
    1 EFA Hand Pump to Prime the Harvesting Module.
    1 Teflon Tape Supply
    1 EFA Screwdriver
    1 Extra Quart of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.

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    Pledge $199 or more About $199

    EFA Generator Kit - First 200

    OWN YOUR OWN EFA THERMAL ELECTRIC GENERATOR FOR UNDER $200. As a fun part of our Product Launch Campaign here on Kickstarter, we will award the the "First 200 for under $200".

    This Reward includes everything needed to construct a complete working EFA Thermal generator. We have designed this kit for Makers.

    You will receive:
    1 Accumulator Tank fully outfitted for EFA.
    3 EFA Harvesting Modules (with Nitinol Rods)
    1 EFA Generation Module.
    1 Quart of EFA Hydraulic Biodegradable Plant Oil

    and 1 "EFA Maker's Kit".

    The Maker's Kit includes ALL Rubber Tubing (72"), Valves, Lines, Brackets and other needed hardware that is required in addition to the other items listed, to complete a Standard EFA Unit.

    Instructions will be included from Joe Kellogg and our team, explaining each module in detail, and the paths to basic assembly.

    EFA Owners will also receive our news updates, exclusive access to our EFA Owners Forum, and more

    We know that many owners will want to customize with their own add-ons and will intuitively go for that. This kit is to supply the modules and base parts that you will need to "take it from there".

    This is a limited offer as our First-Owner Kickstarter Reward. After the first 200, the pledge amount for this tier goes to $250.

    This Package will retail for $300.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    EFA Basic Generator Kit

    OWN YOUR OWN EFA NITINOL THERMAL GENERATOR FOR $250. Our special "First $200 for $200" has filled up to make this tier logical for you. This is still a super value setup, created custom for Kickstarter for this tier. It is an awesome package for what is included.

    You will receive:
    1 Accumulator Tank fully outfitted for EFA.
    3 EFA Harvesting Modules (with Nitinol Rods)
    1 EFA Generation Module.
    1 Quart of EFA Hydraulic Biodegradable Plant Oil

    and 1 "EFA Makers Kit".

    The Maker's Kit includes ALL Rubber Tubing (72"), Valves, Lines, Brackets and other needed hardware that is required in addition to the other items listed, to complete a Standard EFA Unit.

    + Support Forum, Monthly EFA Newsletter, Detailed Instructions and more per the Reward #4 Pledge Tier description.

    This Package will retail for $300.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    EFA Headquarter's Sponsor Party

    Come to our Hudson, New Hampshire Lab for a compete tour and reception with the EFA Team. It will be a special gathering led by our founders, celebrating the progress of EFA, and touring our next generation of devices.

    A catered dinner and many special gifts await you at this event as a thank you for your support of this campaign.

    The pledge covers the event only. The date will be October 20, 2017, to time with the release of our first factory Assembled Devices.
    Limited to 20 people total.

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    Pledge $335 or more About $335

    Large Generator Kit

    This package is our EFA Generator "Large Maker's Kit".

    This tier includes 6 Nitinol Harvesting Modules and extra parts and an extra Generator Module for more design flexibility and power options.

    THIS TIER INCLUDES:

    1 Accumulator Tank fully outfitted for EFA.
    6 EFA Harvesting Modules (with Nitinol Rods)
    2 EFA Generation Modules.
    2 Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.

    PLUS an expanded selection of all of the Rubber Tubing, Valves, Lines, Brackets and other hardware.
    + Support Forum, Monthly EFA Newsletter, Detailed Instructions and more per the Reward #4 Pledge Tier description.

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    Pledge $340 or more About $340

    EFA Developer's Tool Kit

    This parts package is our comprehensive EFA "Developer's Tool Kit". It adds all the tools you need to craft tubing extensions to fit any install.

    50ft of Extra Rubber Tubing
    1 Extra Large Kit of Tubing, Valves, Hardware, Brackets Clamps & Fixtures ($200 value)
    2x Pressure Gauges
    1 EFA Hand Pump to Prime the Harvesting Module.
    2x Double Teflon Tape Supply
    1 EFA Lab Grade Multimeter
    1 EFA Screwdriver
    1 EFA Socket Set
    6x Extra Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil. (This is a $156 value alone)

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    Pledge $390 or more About $390

    Nitrogen Fill Kit

    Included for this tier is a complete EFA Nitrogen Fill Kit to enable instant and easy pressurization of your EFA units. EFA generators take a few days to reach initial full pressurization. This eliminates that wait.

    1 Filled Tank of Nitrogen (including Delivery in the US)
    1 EFA Nitrogen Fill Line for use connecting the Nitrogen Tank with your EFA Accumulator for easy pressurization.

    This reward includes FREE shipping in the US. It is currently limited to US only until we investigate the shipping of Nitrogen internationally. No worries though. Nitrogen may typically be obtained in your nation from industrial sources.

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    Pledge $425 or more About $425

    Stainless Steel Tubing & Tool Kit

    This parts package is our comprehensive EFA "Developer's Tool Kit". It adds Stainless Steel tubing and all the tools you need to craft tubing extensions to fit any install.

    25ft of Stainless Steel Tubing
    1 Stainless Steel Tubing Cutter
    1 Stainless Steel Tube Flaring Kit
    1 Stainless Steel Crimper
    1 Stainless Steel Tube Bender
    2x Pressure Gauges
    1 EFA Hand Pump to Prime the Harvesting Module.
    2x Double Teflon Tape Supply
    1 EFA Multimeter
    1 EFA Screwdriver and Socket Set
    6 Extra Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.

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    Pledge $475 or more About $475

    Brand New EFA Generator - Assembled

    This package includes a complete EFA Thermal Generator that will charge your cell phone or any regulated device.

    We will assemble the unit here in our lab to our highest standards and test its function before shipping. With the included instructions, you will be able to pressurize and start the unit easily and then run it maintenance free for decades.

    THIS UNIT IS EQUIPPED WITH:
    At least 3 EFA Harvesting Modules (with Nitinol Rods)
    2 Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.

    This package includes an expanded EFA "Maker's Tool Kit" so you have spare parts. The gauges and all lines will be installed by us.
    It includes:

    1 Pressure Gauge
    1 EFA Multimeter
    1 EFA Tube Cutter
    1 EFA Hand Pump to Prime the Harvesting Module.
    1 Teflon Tape Supply
    1 EFA Screwdriver

    + Support Forum, Monthly EFA Newsletter, Detailed Instructions and more per the Reward #4 Pledge Tier description.

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    Stainless EFA + Large Tool Kit

    This package is a Large EFA Generator Kit with Large Stainless Steel + Rubber Tubing Kits and our Large Dev Tool Kit!

    This tier includes 10 Nitinol Harvesting Modules and extra parts and an extra Generator Module for more design flexibility and power options.

    THIS TIER INCLUDES:

    1 Accumulator Tank fully outfitted for EFA.
    10 EFA Harvesting Modules (with Nitinol Rods)
    2 EFA Generation Modules.
    2 Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.

    PLUS an expanded selection of all of the Rubber Tubing, Valves, Lines, Brackets and other hardware.
    + Support Forum, Monthly EFA Newsletter, Detailed Instructions and more per the Reward #4 Pledge Tier description.This parts package is our comprehensive EFA "Developer's Tool Kit". It adds Stainless Steel tubing and all the tools you need to craft tubing extensions to fit any install.

    50ft of Stainless Steel Tubing
    1 Stainless Steel Tubing Cutter
    1 Stainless Steel Tube Flaring Kit
    1 Stainless Steel Crimper
    1 Stainless Steel Tube Bender
    2x Pressure Gauges
    1 EFA Hand Pump to Prime the Harvesting Module.
    2x Double Teflon Tape Supply
    1 EFA Multimeter
    1 EFA Screwdriver
    1 EFA Socket Set
    6 Extra Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.

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    Pledge $3,410 or more About $3,410

    Complete Intl. EFA Engineering Package

    This parts package is basically "all of the above" and some. The comprehensive EFA Industrial & Developer's Off-Grid EFA Package
    It is the same as the $3,800 package except this one does not include the optional Nitrogen Kit, so it may be shipped internationally.

    With Rubber, Copper, and Stainless Steel tubing and all the tools you need to craft tubing extensions to fit any number of installs and test configurations.

    4 Accumulator Tanks fully outfitted for EFA.
    50 EFA Harvesting Modules (with Nitinol Rods)
    6 EFA Generation Modules.

    PLUS a HUGE selection of all of the Valves, Lines, Brackets and other hardware needed to build with Stainless Steel, Copper, and Rubber as you wish.

    100ft of Stainless Steel Tubing
    100ft of Copper EFA Tubing
    100ft of Rubber EFA Tubing
    1 Stainless Steel Tubing Cutter
    1 Stainless Steel Tube Flaring Kit
    1 Stainless Steel/Copper Crimper
    1 Stainless Steel/Copper Tube Bender
    4x Pressure Gauges
    2x EFA Hand Pumps to Prime the Harvesting Module(s).
    5x Teflon Tape Supply
    2x EFA Pro Grade Multimeters
    2x Extra Cans of Black Absorbtive Paint
    1 EFA Screwdriver Set
    1 EFA Socket Set
    10 Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.

    + An Application Brainstorming and Engineering Consultation Session with Joe Kellogg and the team at Electricity From Air.

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    Pledge $3,770 or more About $3,770

    The Complete EFA Engineering Package

    This parts package is basically "all of the above" and some. The comprehensive EFA Industrial & Developer's Off-Grid EFA Package

    With Rubber, Copper, and Stainless Steel tubing and all the tools you need to craft tubing extensions to fit any number of installs and test configurations.

    4 Accumulator Tanks fully outfitted for EFA.
    50 EFA Harvesting Modules (with Nitinol Rods)
    6 EFA Generation Modules.
    + The Nitrogen Pressurization Kit

    PLUS a HUGE selection of all of the Valves, Lines, Brackets and other hardware needed to build with Stainless Steel, Copper, and Rubber as you wish.

    100ft of Stainless Steel Tubing
    100ft of Copper EFA Tubing
    100ft of Rubber EFA Tubing
    1 Stainless Steel Tubing Cutter
    1 Stainless Steel Tube Flaring Kit
    1 Stainless Steel/Copper Crimper
    1 Stainless Steel/Copper Tube Bender
    4x Pressure Gauges
    2x EFA Hand Pumps to Prime the Harvesting Module(s).
    5x Teflon Tape Supply
    2x EFA Pro Grade Multimeters
    2x Extra Cans of Black Absorbtive Paint
    1 EFA Screwdriver Set
    1 EFA Socket Set
    10 Quarts of EFA Biodegradable Hydraulic Plant Oil.
    1 Filled Tank of Nitrogen (including Delivery in the US)
    1 EFA Nitrogen Fill Line for use connecting the Nitrogen Tank with your EFA Accumulator for easy pressurization.

    + An Application Brainstorming and Engineering Consultation Session with Joe Kellogg and the team at Electricity From Air.

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Funding period

- (37 days)