Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Inside the Solar Powered Wii

Last response: in Video Games
Share
March 19, 2007 8:35:15 PM

It's a Wii on wheels that uses alternative energy. Tom's Hardware Guide recently built a mobile Wii station powered by solar energy. Here's a look at how our little invention was created from start to finish.
March 20, 2007 2:59:45 AM

Interesting.

I liked the video, too.

Bring us more.

Thanks.
March 20, 2007 3:05:22 AM

A high end system using a radeon x1950
consumes on average about 120w more playing HL2:EP 1 at 1280x1024 full everything except 4xMSAA. This includes 2.1 speakers, 19" lcd, 3 scsi hdd, 1 sata hdd powered by a pc power and cooling 750w PSU. Results obtained w/Kill-a-Watt pro-es set (on another PC) to a sample rate of once a second.
Related resources
March 20, 2007 10:19:09 AM

I don't get the point of the article considering solar energy only supplied 10% of the required power. This would equate to about 10hrs of charge time required for one hour of use. Assuming 12hrs of day and 12hrs of night and poor light at both ends of the 12hrs then you get a little more than 1hour of use a day from the system.

What they really presented was a battery run system that charges from an electrical socket. Roll this system out at 8am, and by 6pm you have enough power to run it for just over hour. That is not what I call a working system.

Now, I guess they could have built a much larger solar array, but then it would not have been portable, the price would have gone way up, and it would not have looked as good. In conjunction, they could have used a much smaller screen to reduce power. However, as it is presented, it is clearly not a solar powered WII system. Rather a batter operated one wearing a solar powered costume.
March 20, 2007 11:12:14 AM

Quote:
However, as it is presented, it is clearly not a solar powered WII system. Rather a batter operated one wearing a solar powered costume.


Every device i've seen that used solar energy had to have a battery source to store the energy, from calculators to larger solar powered devices, cars, even non solar powered vehicles, like the Prius have large batteries to store energy gained from systems like regenerative braking.

Quote:
solar energy only supplied 10% of the required power


...they used a quantum singularity for the other 90%. :p  The monitor looks kinda smallish, but it's 24" WS, damn! :twisted:


Neat article, try attaching a bicycle to it for some extra juice and get ben to pedal while you play. :lol: 
March 20, 2007 11:57:19 AM

Oh, my dispute is not in the battery.
That is necessary and understandable.

My issue is in the low ratio of power the solar unit supplies. There is no way the system as designed would be able to be used. If they increased the solar panels from 1 to (3 or 4) and cut the monitor from 24" down to say 17" the power ratio may increase from 10% to 50% or more. This means the lead time to generate the power is far smaller and the system may actually be able to generate suffiecent power during use to extend the use meaningful time.

Their system - Charge 10 Hours, Run 1 hour, Gain 6 minutes during that hour and system dies.
Total usage - 10 Hours Lead Time, 1hour 6minutes of usage.

Reasonable System - Charge 4 Hours - Runs 2 Hours - Gains 1 hour Charge during use - Then 30Minutes - Then 15...8...4...2...1
Total Usage - 4 Hour Lead Time - 4 Hours of Operation.

The 1st system looks sexy.
(Roll the System out before breakfast and kids can play briefly after dinner.)

The 2nd system works.
(Roll the System out before breakfast and the kids can play all afternoon long after lunch. Make 'em do real activity in the Morning :>)
March 20, 2007 12:29:25 PM

Yep.
March 20, 2007 8:20:55 PM

I cant understand why you would choose an EXPENSIVE HD monitor when you cant even use the resolution with the Wii???

Why no just stick with a cheap and cheerful 19" ??
March 20, 2007 11:00:33 PM

i never understood why electric cars dont power themselves......


think about it, you could use the wheels spinning when in motion as a turbine to generate power to recharge the battery that is being used to turn the wheels, add a solar panel or two and your recharging the battery with the same amount of energy its loosing charging itself. 8O :?
March 21, 2007 3:03:14 AM

My previously mentioned system draws 173W with no CPU load, but just the PC. About 230W running 2 copies of seti. CPU only benchmarks bring it up to 253W. Under FULL graphics load provide by 3DMark 06 consumption peaked at 333W.
March 21, 2007 1:10:24 PM

Quote:
However, as it is presented, it is clearly not a solar powered WII system. Rather a batter operated one wearing a solar powered costume.


Every device i've seen that used solar energy had to have a battery source to store the energy, from calculators to larger solar powered devices, cars, even non solar powered vehicles, like the Prius have large batteries to store energy gained from systems like regenerative braking.

Quote:
solar energy only supplied 10% of the required power


...they used a quantum singularity for the other 90%. :p  The monitor looks kinda smallish, but it's 24" WS, damn! :twisted:


Neat article, try attaching a bicycle to it for some extra juice and get ben to pedal while you play. :lol: 

They could make something like THIS.
March 21, 2007 1:13:32 PM

Quote:
i never understood why electric cars dont power themselves......


think about it, you could use the wheels spinning when in motion as a turbine to generate power to recharge the battery that is being used to turn the wheels, add a solar panel or two and your recharging the battery with the same amount of energy its loosing charging itself. 8O :?


frictional losses in the system make it unbalanced. you have to add an amount of energy equal to that of what you lose do to friction (air, rotational, etc)
March 21, 2007 1:27:18 PM

Quote:
i never understood why electric cars dont power themselves......


think about it, you could use the wheels spinning when in motion as a turbine to generate power to recharge the battery that is being used to turn the wheels, add a solar panel or two and your recharging the battery with the same amount of energy its loosing charging itself. 8O :?


frictional losses in the system make it unbalanced. you have to add an amount of energy equal to that of what you lose do to friction (air, rotational, etc)

yeah thats why i said you should add solar panels to the equation, but anyway you look at it even with frictional loss the car will be able to go further than a normal electric car.
March 21, 2007 1:30:39 PM

Quote:
i never understood why electric cars dont power themselves......


think about it, you could use the wheels spinning when in motion as a turbine to generate power to recharge the battery that is being used to turn the wheels, add a solar panel or two and your recharging the battery with the same amount of energy its loosing charging itself. 8O :?


frictional losses in the system make it unbalanced. you have to add an amount of energy equal to that of what you lose do to friction (air, rotational, etc)

yeah thats why i said you should add solar panels to the equation, but anyway you look at it even with frictional loss the car will be able to go further than a normal electric car.

hybrid (solar, electric, diesel) would be the best we could do right now. extremely effecient cars. the car would need to "learn" your driving habits, though, and take those into account as to how low it can run the batteries down on a given day/time
March 21, 2007 9:03:08 PM

Quote:
i never understood why electric cars dont power themselves......

Simply put, it's an equation of energy; in order to use a dynamo to produce electricity, you have to convert some of that motion energy. This, in the end, detracts from your motion, and produces an equivalent amount of electricity.

The best modern adaptation of this idea is "regenerative breaking," which is how hybrids manage to get a lot of their power; they drain most of the power lost when you go from 60-0, and convert that to a lot of electricity.
March 22, 2007 12:26:50 PM

Actually it's all just a global conspiracy between the oil companies and the governments.

All we need to do is implement the alien technology we recovered from Roswell and the energy and pollution problems would be solved.

See.......................
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20070228/wl_canada_afp/cana...
!