News as of 14 March

14 March 2005:

We have now mounted in place two of our electrical releases, as built by David Edwards in England. This technology is as yet untested, and we can't test it at the moment, because we haven't got the bobs yet. We will bring them from Colombia on the 21st. Here is a close-up of one of the release mechanisms:

You can sort of see how it works. Upon command, a servomotor (of the simple model aircraft type) on the back of the brass plate rotates the white wheel and raises the vertical rod, so that the bit of the rod that shows below the brass bar is pulled upwards and disappears into the bar, thus dropping a link which is hooked to the bob. (Actually the operation is a bit more complicated than that.) When we have the bobs fitted, we will post a detailed description of the release process here, along with a movie. Here is the mechanism as seen from further away:

And here is the system seen along with the pendulum rod. The release mechanism is mounted in place solid as a rock; it doesn't wobble at all.


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