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The Can Crusher Project

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by

Josh Cruz

on 19 June 2013

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Transcript of The Can Crusher Project

The Can Crusher Project
Step 1: Problem Identification
Our company, the CCC Engineering and Consulting, have received a request to design and build a machine that reduces the volume of cans down to at least 70%. Our company, the CCC Engineering and Consulting, Inc., had received a notice from the aluminum disposal company. They asked us to find a way to reduce the total volume of the aluminum cans by at least 70%.
In order to do so, our team of workers and engineers must create a design and build an automated can crusher; one built to crush 180 cans per hour, with each can down to 70%.


Step 2: Research and Investigation
In order for us to create a design for our can crusher, our group did some researching on the history of recycling, and the different processes people have developed over the years. We gathered inspiration from past designs, and looked at what has worked in the past, and what didn't.

To make our design, we also required information, which included:
What are the initial dimensions of the can?
How big must the can crusher be in order to accept a new can?

How much must the can be crushed to achieve a 70% reduction in volume?

How much force must be applied to the can to crush it by 70%?

What power sources are available that can deliver this force?

Would denting the can help in crushing it?


By: Josh Cruz, John Landingin, Mark Payne, Denton Baxter, Skylar Stoodley, Jacob MacNeil
Step 3: Create Possible Solutions
1. The crusher must use two pneumatic cylinders, one to crush the cans, and another to eject.
2. Our design must also have an electric relay control system that to maneuver the robot and control the pneumatic cylinders.
3. The can crusher must also have an electrical power system to provide our system with power, which also provides circuit protection devices for the system.
4. The design requires a structure to hold the can in place, that is also strong enough to withstand the pressure from the pneumatic cylinders and other forces placed upon it.
5. Lastly, our design must have a feed system with the capacity to hold four or more cans.


Step 4: Choose the Best Solution
Step 5: Developmental Work/ Analysis
Step 6: Construct a Prototype
Step 7: Testing and Evaluation
Before we started building the can crusher, plans and possible designs had to be created. So to start, we brainstormed multiple ideas, and debated the pros and cons of each design. Here are a few sketches our group came up with.
When we started the build we started simple. we made the base board on which the piston would sit, and a stop that the piston would crush the can against. As we began to think more about it. we noticed the piston and the can didn't line up very good. so we had to carve out a canal that the can could follow. after the canal was complete the can and the piston lined up better. and we began focusing on how the can would try to slide upward as it was being crush. To prevent the can from sliding upward as got crushed, we had to make a roof design. This was done to prevent the cans from slipping out of the crusher. We designed a lip that would stop the can for moving. We then moved on the making walls, just incase the can slipped to the left or right. We left a opening in the wall at the front of the crusher so that we could add a smaller piston to push out the can after it had been crushed.

After we started working with the robot we found that we need to design a holder for the cans. we took a piece of plywood, and 3 pieces of 2x4 then we used the plywood as a back, two longer pieces of the 2x4 for walls and a smaller part for a base.

Calculations-

Retracting force output=px0.7854x(Dpiston2-Drod2)x0.1

Extending force output=Px0.7854xD2x0.1 Cylinder Length=27cm Rod diameter=1cm cylinder diameter =4cm Pressure=80Psi
Extending force output=100.5312 Newtons
Retracting force output=942.48 Newtons
\m/

• What are the initial dimensions of the can?

Height: 121.96mm=12.196cm Outside Diameter: 54.21mm=5.421cm

Volume Capacity: 355mL
πV = pi x r x h
V=pi x 5.421 x 12.196
Volume: 207.76 cm³




In order to determine the amount of pressure our can crusher requires to crush the cans, we had to calculate the volume of the aluminum cans. TO meet the criteria, we also needed to determine how much 70% of the can was.
To find the best solution, we had to come up with a design that met all of the following specifications:
1. The crusher must use two pneumatic cylinders, one to crush the cans, and another to eject.
2. Our design must also have an electric relay control system that to maneuver the robot and control the pneumatic cylinders.
3. The can crusher must also have an electrical power system to provide our system with power, which also provides circuit protection devices for the system.
4. The design requires a structure to hold the can in place, that is also strong enough to withstand the pressure from the pneumatic cylinders and other forces placed upon it.
5. Lastly, our design must have a feed system with the capacity to hold four or more cans.

Also, we needed a design that could efficiently perform the task at hand. We needed to find a way to maximize the amount of cans crushed per hour, while also using the least amount of resources as possible.
After building the structure, we tested connected the pneumatic pistons to air supplies to test if our calculations. To completely flatten the can around 60-80 psi was needed. These are some of the results.
After making sure the pneumatics worked, we incorporated the sensors and the robot into our design.
However, due to some miscalculations, removing the cans from the storage unit has become very difficult. Teaching the robot has become a long, painstaking process.
Full transcript