Final Project



Final Project




One of the many applications of





Here is a sketch I did :

Straight Peristaltic Pump sketch

Fig. 1 - Straight Peristaltic Pump sketch

Animated :

Straight Peristaltic Pump Animated

Fig. 1 - Straight Peristaltic Pump Animated

Nitinol is an Alloy of Nickel and Titanium.
One of its properties is the shape memory effect.
When heated, for example when electricity flows in it, Nitinol goes from one christallographic state (martensite) to another one (austenite). This makes Nitinol go back to its original shape when heated with quite some strength.

NiTi transformations - Wikipedia

Fig.2 - NiTi transformations - Wikipedia

As shown in Fig.1, The idea is to use this effect to contract one after the other nitinol spring rings encapsulated in a rubber cylinder around a rod.
It would be like squishing a hose with our fingers and moving along : water would flow.


Here is an inspirational video from MIT :

Vid.1 - MIT's worm robot

Other videos on Nitinol :

Vid.2 - Niti (Nitinol) properties explained

Vid.3 - Nitinol engine

Note that even though the title of this video starts with "Free energy", there is not such thing as free energy, at least not here. The energy is coming from the hot water that, prior to the experiment, was heated! But it's still very interesting to be able to transform heat right into rotational mechanical motion.

Even cheaper artificial muscle :

Vid.4 - Fishline artificial muscle

Maybe I'll also try with fishing line.


Artificial muscle have many potential applications : biomimetism, robots, industrial actuators, aerospace, automotive, medicine, soft toys, clothing, tactile interfaces, power generators, smart structures and more.

My direct application is plumbing pumps in self-sufficient houses.
I work with a company called Earthship Biotecture founded by Architect Michael Reynolds. We design and build off-the-grid sustainable houses.

Eartship - Global Model - Exterior

Pic. 1 - Earthship - Global Model - Exterior

Eartship - Global Model - growing food inside

Pic. 2 - Earthship - Global Model - growing food inside

Six principles are at the heart of all our designs :

The six principles

Pic. 3 - The six principles

Basically, the walls are made of rammed earth, very good thermal mass, surrounded by insulation. It's following the bioclimatic rules : sun facing, natural convection, etc.

Passive heating and cooling - Natural convection

Pic. 4 - Passive heating and cooling - Natural convection

To go one step further towards self sufficiency, local manufacturing of the systems we use would be great, especially manufacturing of the electrical and water systems.

Electrical system : Charge controller, inverter

Pic. 5 - Electrical system : Charge controller, inverter

Different sorts of windmills

Pic. 6 - Different sorts of windmills

Pumps and filters

Pic. 7 - Pumps and filters

Grey water pump feeding the toilet

Pic. 8 - Grey water pump feeding the toilet

My peristaltic pump is meant to replace these pumps.

Straight Peristaltic Pump sketch

Fig. 1 - Straight Peristaltic Pump sketch

It is durable, can pump dirty water containing detritus, probably mud too and doesn't get clogged.
It can be made locally. Also, since made of soft materials, the pump wouldn't need to be handled with care.

Project Management


I will use Trello to help me manage the project :


Trello web interface

Mind Map

Here is a conceptual map of the project :

Mind Map

Mind Map


Here is a diagram showing the steps I'll follow to accomplish this project :

Strategy diagram

Strategy diagram

We can see how the spiral development implements.


Here is a diagram showing the documentation workflow :

Documentation workflow diagram

Final project documentation workflow


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