About this project
After you've watched our intro video above, check out the short video below to see the Epiphany onE Puck in action:
Who is Epiphany Labs and what is onE Puck?
Epiphany Labs is a group of technologists and business professionals who have a passion for inventing new technologies and tinkering with existing ones to develop products that create positive changes throughout the world. Through our sister company, Epiphany Solar Water Systems, we have developed a low cost, portable, solar powered, water purification system capable of turning virtually any source of water into clean, drinking water. Although our current project, the Epiphany onE Puck, may seem like a tiny little thing compared to that, the potential of the technology reaches far beyond just charging cell phones. How does the Epiphany onE Puck accomplish this, you may ask? Allow us to explain…
The idea behind the Epiphany onE Puck is to use a stirling engine powered solely by heat disparities, such as a hot or cold drink, a candle, ice, etc. These heat sources will provide enough power to the stirling engine to fully charge your cell phone battery. There's nothing new about Stirling engines - they were invented in the early 1800s - but thanks to modern materials and modern electronics, we are able to put them to use in ways that weren't previously possible.
So, now the new question is, “How can a small device that powers my cell phone change the world?”
Here’s how: Our vision is to take the knowledge and experiences we gain from perfecting the Epiphany onE Puck and move on to build even larger stirling engines that can power even larger appliances and eventually entire households! We'll also use them to enhance the water units that we developed through Epiphany Solar Water Systems, which will increase their water output AND provide electricity to the people we help. That means virtually anyone currently living without access to water or electricity will be able to enjoy these comforts. Why not? Lend a hand! Epiphany's onE vision is to share the lovE: to change our onE world, with onE solution at onE time. We hope that everyonE will join us and believE that together, we can change the world!
There's onE more thing we almost forgot to mention... the team at Epiphany takes what we're doing very seriously, but we also love to have fun while we're at it (after all, what good is a "better" world if we're not smiling more?!) So, just for the fun of it, we're going to add a new short video to this page every few days. Some will be goofy, some will be neat, some will be amazing, but ALL of them will be worth a minute of your time. So please check back often throughout the campaign to see what we're up to. And, if you miss one, you'll be able to view our past videos on our youtube channel at: https://www.youtube.com/user/epiphanylabs
How does the Epiphany onE Puck work?
The Epiphany onE Puck connects to your iPhone, Android, or similar device. Setting up onE Puck is as easy as connecting the onE Puck to your phone and applying heat or cold. That’s it.
·All Android phones
-Any device that uses a USB charger drawing 1000 mA or less
The Epiphany onE Puck is tiny, lightweight and portable. It can be used in all types of settings when that last battery bar dreadfully disappears…
Say you are out for a night at the bar and your phone battery dies. Rather than awkwardly moving to a corner to plug in your charger, or leaving altogether, you can pull out the Epiphany onE Puck, power it up with that cold beer you’re holding, and charge away!
Your work schedule is unpredictable and always on the-go. The only constant part of your day is the daily hot coffee or tea that keeps you going. Traveling from city to city, or country to country leaves you no time to bother with finding an outlet or adapter to charge your phone, which is bound to power-down sooner or later. The Epiphany onE Puck is the answer to your problem. You can now multi-task to the max! Use that cup of coffee to recharge both you and your smart phone at the same time.
The possibilities for the Epiphany onE Puck are endless. You only live once, and there is simply too much to see and do. Who wants to be bothered with worrying about finding that hidden outlet, plugging in your cord, and recharging? Don’t let your phone battery decide where life will take you next. Leave the power to the Epiphany onE Puck.
Where do we stand?
We’ve been working in research and development on heat cycles and engine technology for more than 12 years now. Most of the research going on in this industry is related to much larger engines. The onE Puck, in this tiny form, is a new idea for Epiphany, but the concepts behind it are nothing new. So far, we have developed the first working onE Puck prototype. The onE Puck is at the real, working prototype stage right now, which is as close as we can get it to the production version without raising the funds we need.
With your support, we can bring the Epiphany onE Puck to the worldwide marketplace. As we embark on mass production, your contribution will help to fund:
- Final design modifications including engine optimizations
- Production tooling
- Raw material orders
- Decent pay for our poor, disheveled engineers
Show off your coolness with Epiphany onE Puck’s cool, chic exterior. Want to stand out even more? Customize your onE Puck with personalized engravings. Let us know and we’ll gladly engrave your name. Or, let onE Puck say something about the type of person you are. Your wish is our command! You say it, we’ll engrave it.
With every contribution of $99 or more, not only will you receive a onE Puck when they're ready for market but, as soon as we reach our funding goal, we'll also send you a windshied sticker AND your choice of four Epiphany onE Puck T-shirts so you can show the world that You R onE Believer too! Pick from four T-shirt designs (images below):
- E is for everyonE
- We R onE
- onE Love
- onE Believer
Contributions and Rewards
$99 – Early Bird Special! 250 onE Pucks available + tee shirt
+ windshield sticker
$115 – One Epiphany onE Puck + tee shirt + windshield sticker
$135 – One Epiphany onE Puck with custom engraving + tee shirt + windshield sticker
We're starting with a couple of questions that we get from our local crowd, but keep an eye out for additions to this section. We'll add more as they come in.
Q. Does the onE Puck work with iPads or Laptops? A. No... at least not yet. Right now, we are confident that we can deliver you a product that will provide enough power for your phone. Once this product is out the door, we will begin designing larger versions to power everything from computers to entire households.
Q. If this is based on 200 year old engine technology, what's so special about it? A. We're not trying to reinvent the wheel here. What we're doing is taking existing, well known technologies and combining them in a way that nobody else has ever done in the past. When Robert Stirling, the inventor of this type of engine, was an old man, he predicted that "it remains for some skilled and ambitious mechanist in a future age to repeat it under favorable circumstances and with complete success.” After 200 years of waiting, we think that time has come.
Q. How much power does the onE Puck produce? A. The onE Puck is designed to produce 5 watts at maximum output, which is the same as a standard smart phone charger.
Q. How fast can the onE Puck charge my phone? A. It depends. Most smart phones require 1000mA at 5Vdc (a total of 5 watts) to charge them at full speed. The onE Puck is designed to be able to produce that 1000mA under ideal conditions (a fresh, hot drink placed on the hot side, for instance). We want it to work even in less-than-ideal conditions, so, when there isn't enough heat or cold for the onE Puck to make the full 5W, it is designed to store whatever it can make and then dump it to your phone in batches. In this case, it would take longer to charge your phone but the onE Puck will still provide power faster than most phones can use it.
Q. How hot or cold does a drink have to be to operate the onE Puck? A. The onE Puck can run on relatively mild heat differences, but the bigger the difference, the better. With a fresh, hot drink, it will produce maximum output.
Q: Can you set the onE Puck on a warm or cold surface, or does it always have to be face up for whatever you are using? A. Either way is fine. The onE Puck is powered by the difference in temperature between the two surfaces, so it doesn't care whether you make the cold side colder, the hot side hotter, or both.
Q. Is the onE Puck waterproof? A. The onE Puck is designed to easily handle the water it will see from normal condensation or spillage. We're not ready to tell you it's ok to take in the bathtub just yet, but we're working on it!
Q. Does the onE Puck come with a warranty? A. We haven't figured out exact warranty policies yet but we hate companies that make decisions based on "policy" anyway. Our reputation is too valuable to let someone go away unhappy. Until we figure out the specifics of the warranty, rest assured that, whatever happens, we'll make it right.
Risks and challenges
One thing we have learned throughout our years of exploring and inventing new technologies is that there are always unpredictable bumps along the way, and it is always easier said than done. We have built a great prototype; however, it is not quite ready for prime time just yet.
We have overcome significant design challenges during the creation of the first onE Puck. One of the major design challenges we have faced is fitting our technology into a small enough application that it is the size of a drink coaster and the thickness of a hockey puck. We have also faced design challenges in material selection. The good news is that we are not reinventing the wheel; we are simply adapting existing and long proven technologies to a new application. And if it’s harder than we hope… hey, we’re a bunch of young, spunky engineers. We won't quit until we get the job done!
While we now have a functioning prototype, we still view this project as being only 80% of the way done. And, like anything, the last 20% is the hardest part. Before we can count the onE Puck as a success, we need to put it through the engineering process of "build, test, break, analyze, redesign, and repeat" a few dozen more times so we can more clearly identify its strengths and weaknesses and make any necessary adaptations. The first prototype was hand-made by two highly-skilled engineers. Taking it from here to production will require the full time dedication of a couple of engineers for several more months, followed by several months of preparations for the first production run.
So here's the snag. The same engineers who we need to work on the onE Puck already have full time jobs at our sister company, Epiphany Solar Water Systems. Neither company can afford to do without them right now. So, that is why we're here asking for your help. If we can raise our minimum of $100k, we will be able to dedicate the resources this project deserves. At that funding level, we are confident that we will be able to build and deliver onE Pucks to our backers by early next year. And if we far exceed our funding goal, our plan is to dedicate even more resources to this project so that we can make it even better and bring it to market even faster.
Please feel free to send us inquiries, and we'll provide all the answers we can.
Thanks for visiting. Please support our project and help us change our onE world together.
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