Project:Fuel cell laptop

From London Hackspace Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Knowing if such a project is feasible is the matter of answering two questions:

  • What maximum power can we expect of a reasonably sized and not ridiculously expensive fuel cell?
  • What is the absolute minimum power consumption of something we can build and that qualifies as a modern laptop?

Fuel cell max power

Best candidate is probably direct methanol fuel celles (DMFC): high power density, no expensive catalysts, reliable technology, can drink vodka.

Problems: Safety hazards

  • DMFC seem to require some heating to operate optimally (and ideally high pressure too, but most designs just don't use it and cope with reduced power)
  • Methanol is toxic, and it can indeed catch fire

Power ? Size ? Price ? How to build ?

Previous work

Ultra low consumption laptop

The minimum specs I want (Endy)

  • 14' display
  • Enough computing power, RAM and storage to run a recent Debian smoothly (don't care about the architecture as long as it is supported by debian)
  • Wifi + Wired networking
  • Standard I/O (nothing fancy, USB2, audio jacks and some external display)

Candidate parts

  • Processor:
    • Intel Atom
    • AMD Geode
    • VIA has some nice things too I heard
    • ARM-based ? I'm clueless about those
  • Motherboard: ?
    • Or may as well go for a SoC
  • RAM: ? most suppliers do nice ultra-low voltage RAM now
  • SSD: ?
  • LCD panel
    • LED-backlit
    • OLED would be the must here but the price tag is not nice (and the decrease in power not so huge)
  • Networking (if not included in the mobo/SoC)
  • Graphics (same)

Need to evaluate the power requirements of all that