[Team Omega - Final Project Proposal: [Washing Machine Auto-Balancer]

Team Members:

    • James Davis
    • Polina Osipova
    • Ravi Wijesekera

 

Final Project Proposal

Our device will automatically correct balance offsets that are inherent in washing machines which are filled with clothes. The balancing aspect will come into effect during the machine’s spin cycle. Opposing to our prototype, we will  move away from Arduino to a smaller microcontroller and will implement the circuit on a real washing machine with added ballasts. The market for this type of idea includes all appliance purchasing consumers. Specifically, this would likely be an option on mid- to high-end machines as the addition of these parts increases the cost to build.

The main goals:

  • Reach the  minimum time frame for the balancing process.
  • Aim to produce at a reasonable cost.
  • Make applicable to different washing machines.

Team Structure

  • Individually: as many as each team member’s schedule allows ( min 2)
  • Group: 2x a week, 2 hour/session.

Project Timeline

Water is an issue we anticipate might challenge us later on. Initially, the challenge will be keeping the water in the ballasts while in operation. This is a challenge since we’ll be employing a passive system of water retainment. Our current approach will be to use channels to divide the water into manageable portions. Subsequently, once the water is kept in place, the next problem will be removal. At present, the idea is to slow the speed of the machine to a point that facilitates a passive dumping of water from the aforementioned channels.

 

Phase Date Acceptable Good Excellent
Project Completion  April 25 The system automatically corrects balance offsets, some instability is present. Minor cosmetic issues. The final report/documentation is completed. Everything is working as planned (the system automatically corrects balance offsets). Most significant testings are done. The final report/documentation is completed. Everything is working as planned (the system automatically corrects balance offsets). All testings are done, no defects discovered. The code is optimized and looks neat. The final report/documentation is completed.
Goal 6  4/2 The system is mostly working.  The system is working, mostly stable. The system is working properly, no instability or defects. Working on the documentation.
Goal 5 3 /23 Workaround is found and the main test passed.  Minor issues were fixed, less significant tests in consideration.  Less significant tests are completed.
Milestone 2 3/16 Main test is completed. Unexpected issue discovered – workaround in consideration. Main test is completed. Minor issues presented.  Main test is completed. The above-mentioned water issue is not presented.
Goal 4  2/24  The circuit is partially moved onto a washing machine.  The circuit is moved onto a washing machine, ballasts added.  Integrate all the components into one final system.
Goal 3  2/17 The workaround is found and applied.  Parts ordered.  The circuit is prepared to be moved onto a real washing machine. Parts ordered.  Get a washing machine and ballasts.
Milestone 1  2/10   The collected readings might be slightly different from what we expected. Workaround yet to be found.  The collected readings might be slightly different from what we expected. Workaround is found.  The collected readings are expected; the circuit is ready to be moved onto a real washing machine
Goal 2 2/3   Few possible alternatives for arduino, but best one not picked.  Research for an alternative microcontroller is completed, but not ordered yet.  An alternative microcontroller is found and it successfully replaces arduino.
Goal 1 1/27 Have an outline of the final product. Have an outline of the final product, excluding potentially needed extra-parts ( still have them listed). Get a pictorial description of the final product . All the potential extra-parts considered.
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