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May 19, 2020 – CNC Maker Zone

Coronavirus screening with the Odroid Go thermal IR camera

Thermal IR (infrared) cameras are obviously exciting gadgets for lots of uses, including looking for heat loss in buildings, studying heat transfer, or even just seeing how hot your cup of tea is. But, with all the worries these days around coronavirus and COVID, they have obvious uses in screening yourself, your family and others for fever. The problem is that they can be expensive, so why not do it on the cheap using the relatively inexpensive Odroid Go open-source thermal camera project? If so, here’s the sort of data you can expect to get from it: in this case I can be pretty sure I don’t have a fever 🙂

A thermal IR scan of a face on the Odroid Go screen

The Odroid Go thermal camera is a simple, yet very useful, IR (infrared) thermal camera project for the inexpensive Odroid Go handheld ESP32 system. It allows saving of data to an SD card as well as having a Bluetooth interface to wirelessly get data off the camera to a computer, tablet or mobile phone. It’s based on the MLX90640 32×24 pixel infrared thermal array modules that you can get relatively inexpensively many places online. Here’s a short list of some of it’s features:

  • Onscreen display of the IR image, with a movable cursor to let you query the temperature for any single pixel (press up, down, left and right on the + control to move the cursor).
  • A range of colour maps, which are easily added to in the Arduino code.
  • A zoom button so you can switch the IR image to/from full-screen mode.
  • Saving of data to the SD card on your ODroid GO in text CSV format for later analysis.
  • A fever screening colour map, which shows temperatures above 36C in red to indicate when checking for a fever may be necessary (not for medical diagnosis).
  • In fever checking mode IR images with temperatures above 36C are indicated by an audible beep, to help with rapid screening of your family and friends.
  • An on-screen battery indicator, so you know when to recharge your GO.
  • A Bluetooth interface that lets you take full control of the IR camera, including transferring the IR data to a PC as ASCII text or binary data.
  • 3D printing STL files to make a forward-facing or rear-facing case to protect your thermal IR module.
The finished thermal camera module on an Odroid Go

It’s also quite simple to construct the camera, with very little soldering. All you need is four pieces of wire, the IR camera module, a small piece of Veroboard (a.k.a. stripboard), plus 10 0.1″ header pins in a strip, and the circuit is done! There’s two different 3D printed case versions in the project that make it easy to protect your IR module: for example below is the IR module fitted into the rear-facing case version (the inside of the photo above).

The IR module fixed inside the 3D printed case

If you feel like having a go at building your own Odroid Go thermal IR camera, whether for virus screening, energy management or other uses just click on the link below to visit the Github page. You’ll find lots of information there including the code and 3D printed case project files 🙂

Click here to view the project on github.
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3D printing door pullers to fight Covid-19

Door handles, and anything you need to pull, are important transmission points for viruses and bacteria. So, with all the concerns about Coronavirus and COVID-19, I obviously wanted to make some handle pullers I could use outside my apartment and to give to relatives and friends to help keep them safe. I didn’t find exactly what I wanted online so this is the result of me designing my own model using LibreCAD and OpenSCAD. Here’s what the finished design looks like:

A 3D printed door puller photo

Most of all, I wanted the puller not to look sterile and medical: there’s enough anxiety around viruses already, so why add to that. For that reason I designed it to have a chunky and colourful look, with rounded corners and extra parts to fit around holes to increase the number of filament colours I could use. Also, I designed the opener to close into a case with a latching action to make sure it didn’t come open when not wanted, so as not to cause unwanted contamination.

A few door pullers printed in different colours

To construct the opener from the STL files you need the opener itself, the case, the hinge inner and outer rings, and two surround rings. There’s two versions of each of the rings (round and cog-like) to give a bit more variety to the look, which can be mixed and matched. The opener simply needs placing inside the case, then insert the outer ring. With a bit of glue inside that you can then insert the inner ring.

If you’re careful with the gluing the rings will then still rotate letting you use the opener as a fidget ring too. The surround rings can then be glued into the smaller finger holes, which are positioned not to conflict with the opener when closing it up. If the latching is a bit stiff, a little light filing at the end of the opener will help. Adding a keyring loop and/or carabiner finishes the job and makes it easy to carry on a bag or belt loop. If you have big hands, making the finger holes too tight, you can just increase the X and Y scales in your slicer (keep them both the same so the holes stay circular).

Two door pullers, one partly open and the other fully open.

To download all the STL files to make your own door puller, just click the link below to MyMiniFactory: don’t worry, the project is completely free to download and use. Also, if you want to customise the models in some other way, the LibreCAD DXF file, and the OpenSCAD file, are included there too. The OpenSCAD file includes variables for opener and case thicknesses as well, making it easy to build a thicker or thinner version with little effort. But, however you build it, take care and avoid the viruses 🙂

View this project on MyMiniFactory.com
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