Hacking Mosquito Swatter. Start Up Project 28

1COne Damaged Mosquito Swatter was in my home with full of dust. So, decided to salvage its parts to reuse for other purposes. Just to avoid e –waste and to do some kind of Recycling. Well, it has a good 2.4V Rechargeable Battery and a circuit board. The problem is in its circuit board that  generates high volt AC to burn the Mosquito. But the charger is still working. So decided to use the charger part to make a High power Rechargeable LED Flash light. The Mosquito Swatter generates a high voltage between 400- 1000 volts from the 2.4 V battery. For this, there is an oscillator circuit and an Inverter transformer. The Inverter transformer converts the 2.4 V DC from the battery to around 200V AC. The oscillator circuit makes the AC waveform. The 200 V AC thus produced is then boosted by a Voltage Multiplier comprising some high volt capacitors and diodes. This boosted AC appears in a High volt Capacitor which then passes it to the Nets of the Swatter. The middle net of the Swatter is Positive while the outside nets are Negative. When we press the switch, the High volt capacitor discharges high volt AC to the nets. When the Mosquito passes through the net, it explodes due to high voltage. Even though the AC voltage is very high around 1KV, Current is negligible. Let us see how that Swatter turned into a Rechargeable Flash light.
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How Swatter burns Mosquito? Fact File 27

Mosquito Swatter, the commonly called mosquito bat is an electronic device that produces high voltage around 300-400 volts in its nets. When the mosquito passes through the outer and inner nets of the swatter, its wings short out and burns in the spark. When the mosquito swatter is switched on, and gently swings, the electric field from the net attracts the mosquitoes and they try to move though the net which gives a fatal shock. Proper care is necessary while using the swatter, otherwise it will be damaged easily. These are the tips to maintain the swatter.

  1. In rechargeable type swatter, the battery should be properly charged. It is a 3 volt battery which discharges deeply if the unit is used for 10-20 minutes continuously. So after the use, it should be plugged in for charging.
  2. Grid shorting is another important cause of failure. During the use, the grid may mechanically vibrate and hit on furniture and walls. The nets are very delicate and if they make contact each other, shorting occurs which may destroy the internal circuit.
  3. If water is spilled on the net, dry it immediately in sunlight. Do not try to push cloth  into the net to wipe water. It will destroy the net.
  4. Take care while charging the Swatter. If the inbuilt plug is loose in the socket, there is chance for sparking which can destroy the internal circuit. If the plug is loose, the swatter may fall from the wall socket. So if the pin is not fitting in the socket firmly, try to charge in an extension cord with the swatter placed in the horizontal plane.
  5. Do not introduce any metal tools like screw driver into the net. It will destroys the net through shorting and can give a shock (mild but can burn) to you. Do not touch the net when the switch is pressed.
  6. The output from step-up transformer is connected to the grids using wires. These wires are soldered to the grid. When the mechanical vibration is too strong, the solder points may detach.
  7. Do not give the swatter to children. They will play badminton considering mosquito as ball. During the play, definitely there will be a  hit- not on the mosquito but on the wall or furniture. This can damage the swatter permanently.

Inside the swatter…

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