Minutes from the 10/1/10 meeting PDF Print E-mail
Written by Billie Taylor   
Saturday, 02 October 2010 19:40


Fishing line will be too brittle to use for deep sea. We’re back to our first design for the weight release system.

We want it to surface as close to where we dropped it as possible. Instead of a drum full of diesel, a long thin vertical balloon with fins should act as a torpedo to expedite its ascent.

On the top we should have a very long, thin highly polished steel rod with an X-Labs  flag on top to facilitate retrieval. An alternative to the flag is a corner reflector.

For the first test in 150-200 feet of water, we will use cable to retrieve it.

As soon as the weight release system is tested successfully, we need to start on phase two, building the payload.

Indica will research components pressure limits.

Possibly use a small pressure chamber for the first test to see when the components fail. This can be removed later.

Components need to be tested in a high-pressure environment.

We need to research chips designed for deep-sea or space environments.

In the next week, we need to test our plywood prototype.

Billie will research whether there is a deep pool with a window on the Tampa Campus.

We won’t be able to test the prototype in Coyt’s pool for two weeks.


We need to start printing out these new flyers

Everyone gets 14 color prints a day.  We need to work together to get enough printed


Install Recaptcha to filter out the spammers.

If the Recaptcha doesn’t work Coyt will set up an e-mail alternative.

Content for Y1




Weight release system /Delivery system


Billie will send her notes about Y1 to Alex for approval before posting on the website.

Coyt will set up the menu so that members can post content.

Homepage is set up as a blog roll.

Google Groups

Everyone needs to sign up for the members Google group in order to receive e-mail updates

Last Updated on Saturday, 02 October 2010 19:51
October 1st meeting PDF Print E-mail
Written by Billie Taylor   
Friday, 01 October 2010 11:06

Happy Friday everyone!

X-Labs will be meeting today from 3-5 PM in ENC 3006. I hope to see all of you there!

Last Updated on Friday, 01 October 2010 11:08
Minutes from the 9/24/10 meeting PDF Print E-mail
Written by Billie Taylor   
Monday, 27 September 2010 18:36

Hello Everyone!

For anyone who could not make it to the meeting last week, these are the topics we covered. We hope to see everyone at the meeting this week!


  • Room for meetings
    • New room: ENC3006 Fridays from 3-5 PM, reserved until December 3
  • Advertising
    • Need a new poster for X-Labs to get members.
    • Coyt, Billie, and Lucky are going to work on the poster
  • Website
    • Change it so that spammers can’t create accounts
    • New members will have to send an e-mail to Coyt to join.
  • Google Group  
    • X-labs members must sign up for the Google group in order to send and receive e-mail
  • Expo
    • Budget is due next Friday; Keven and Alex will do the budget next week
    • Ideas for EXPO: handout, t-shirts, electronics parts, fusor ($300), lifter ($150), Tesla coil ($150), plasma speaker ($150), balloon camera ($150), ferrofluid ($100), coil gun/cap bank, mod stacks ($50)
  • Y-1
    • Payload dragged to bottom by weights, weights will be released, payload (filled with oil) will then float back up to the surface
    • Need a scuba tank to test components under pressure
    • Possibly use fishing line or spool to retrieve payload
    • First test should be at about 100 feet with fishing line attached in case release system fails; second test at 200 feet
    • Coyt will see if we can test in his pool
    • Indica will e-mail someone about the pressure vessel
    • Alex will do the math on the fishing line
    • Joe Register will talk to USF St. Pete about the 30 foot pool and the pressure vessel

Last Updated on Tuesday, 28 September 2010 16:46
Meeting on 9/24/10 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 23 September 2010 17:08


There will be a regular meeting starting at 3:30p.m. tomorrow at USF. The meeting will be held in a new room and hopefully this will become our permanent room. The room number is 3006 in ENC. We will be discussing some administration topics such as the website followed by Y1. 

For Y1 we will be showing and explaining the test rig that we built last Saturday, discussing improvements for it, and making a plan to test it in a pool. We also need to start thinking about other aspects of Y1 such as the actual payload design and electronics. 

I hope to see everyone at the meeting tomorrow. 


Last Updated on Thursday, 23 September 2010 17:18
9/18/10 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Saturday, 18 September 2010 20:30

X-Labs finally had a productive project build day! Today several X-Labs members met at the trailer to work on the Y1 Weight Release System. We started at around 1p.m. and finished at 6:30p.m. The build WAS A SUCCESS! We now have a prototype weight release system for testing purposes that works surprisingly well. 

The whole design is meant to release weights that carry the Y1 sensor payload to the bottom of the ocean so that the sensor payload can float back up to the surface for recovery. This weight release system is a huge design challenge because the ocean floor has the consistency of pudding; this means that there is very little difference between the bottom of the ocean and the whole trip down to the bottom. We needed a way to release the weights without electronics, explosives, heat, or chemicals because of problems with huge pressures and extreme temperatures. The goal was to make the system ridiculously simple and foolproof. We came up with a wing design that uses the force of the water to hold the weights to the payload during the trip down and then release the weights once the payload has reached the bottom and the force of the water is gone. 

We will be using this prototype for initial testing in the pool. The X-Labs meeting next Friday may be held at a USF pool for the first tests. We will post updates if this becomes a reality. There are also other designs for the weight release system that we may build and test that would allow the whole weight release system to return to the surface with the sensor payload. Below is a video of the system and some pictures of the build process. 

Besides work, the day did include a fun trip to Harbor Freight where we had plunger fights and decided that Harbor Freight is in fact the perfect place to be when the impending zombie apocalypse arrives. Pizza was also provided by Alex for lunch. 

Thank you to everyone who helped today (Especially Steven for buying everything needed!). Lets keep up the good work!

Coyt Barringer 

PS: The Trailer is somewhat clean again. 

Last Updated on Thursday, 23 September 2010 17:07
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