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All Over But the Funding: Open Hardware Spectrometer Kit 62

New submitter mybluevan writes "The Public Laboratory for Open Technology and Science is putting together an open hardware spectrometer kit on Kickstarter. The kits are built using an HD webcam, discarded DVD, and a couple other odd bits. They've also put together a kit for your smart phone and open-source software for desktop, Android, and iOS. Need to analyze the contents of your coffee, the output of your new grow lights, or a distant star on a budget? Just build your own spectrometer, or pick up the limited edition steampunk version." Besides making cool hardware, they'd like to "build a Wikipedia-style library of open source spectra, and to refine and improve sample collection and analysis techniques. We imagine a kind of 'SHAZAM for materials' which can help to investigate chemical spills, diagnose crop diseases, identify contaminants in household products, and even analyze olive oil, coffee, and homebrew beer."
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All Over But the Funding: Open Hardware Spectrometer Kit

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  • Re:Pretty cool ... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by drooling-dog ( 189103 ) on Saturday September 22, 2012 @10:45AM (#41420853)

    Trying to do it on the 7-8 bits that you get from a (consumer grade) sensor ... is going to be more difficult.

    True, but if you're imaging the spectrum in two dimensions and summing/averaging vertically (over columns), you'll improve your Signal/Noise ratio considerably (by the square root of the number of vertical pixels, ideally). It wouldn't surprise me if the results were quite decent.

"An open mind has but one disadvantage: it collects dirt." -- a saying at RPI