Hide your pets - this robotic mousetrap was designed to detect and exterminate everything in sight
This shoebox-sized powerhouse would make Tim "The Tool Man" Taylor proud. Like cracking a nut with a sledgehammer, the robotic "Better Mousetrap" goes to the extreme to detect and destroy its target.
"Many people have been trying to develop a 'better mousetrap' for years, so we decided to build one in the literal sense," says Jake Easton.
The thought of creating a better mousetrap was particularly compelling for the team. "We're constantly looking for innovative ways to showcase technology, and this was a natural fit," Easton said.
Junk is an inventor's best friend, and goes a long way to keeping project costs down.
Over the past decade or so, they have accumulated a lot of what Easton calls "junk" to help develop their projects. "A good supply of junk is an inventor's best friend, and goes a long way to keeping project costs down," Easton says.
The superfluous design was purposefully chosen for the added "Wow" factor that it brought to the project.
"It would be difficult to beat the simplicity that James Atkinson designed into his mousetrap more than 100 years ago," Easton said, but the admittedly overdesigned mousetrap "is a lot more fun to watch."
And you thought this only works for rodents? The Better Mousetrap also eliminates those pesky computer mice too
To make the machine more accessible, Telovation.com produced a video showing the Better Mousetrap in action. No lengthy "Gone with the Wind" epics here. The mousetrap and unsuspecting mouse are put through their paces in just 34 seconds of fascinating video [below].
Better Mousetrap Video
The machine's rugged design features a 0.25" thick 6061 polished aluminum case, with a small compartment containing the mechanical and electronic systems, including solenoid valves, controllers, indicators, circuit boards, and pneumatic actuator.
Does neatness count? The team made sure the interior compartment is as clean as the exterior is functional
The Better Mousetrap Specifications:
Pneumatic Cylinder: 1/2" Bore with 3/4" Stroke
Air Pressure (Max): 60 PSI
Strike Force at 40 PSI: 102 lbs
Key Lock Switch and Manual Hammer Override
Visual Monitoring: Power, PSI, and Armed - Detect - Fire
Case Construction: 6061 0.25" Polished Aluminum
Inputs: 12VDC and Air Line
Dimensions: 12" x 6" x 2.5"
Weight: 5.5 Pounds
Easton said their biggest challenge for the project were the dozens of hours spent grinding, sanding, buffing, and polishing the aluminum case. "I have a newfound appreciation for those in the metal finishing business."
While the mousetrap packs a lot of punch for its small size, it still overshadows its little brothers, measuring 12" x 6" x 2.5" high and weighing in at 5.5 pounds.