After finalising our concept last week, we were tasked to work on the technical aspect of the installation which is how to create the repulsion to cause the balls to disperse in a randomized way.
Through researching, we found that we could only control the qualities of a magnet through creating an electromagnet. However, during the testing we found many loopholes and issue with this circuit. Firstly, the electromagnet created using nails and a battery is not strong enough to attract and repel even another nail. the attraction force we got from two 1.5 volts battery is not strong enough. Secondly, the circuit of powering the electromagnet caused the batteries to over heat very quickly. We saw that as a major problem as we would need to power a large number of electromagnets since they are the buildings in the map. The overheating issue would definitely be a big issue especially powering so many electromagnets.
The way to increase the strength of the electromagnet is to increase the number of coils created by the wire on the nails. For our installation, aesthetics wise it is tough to have the buildings be seen in coils but the concept and idea is still plausible.
With the circuit idea possibly having problems, we decided to try to use the natural forces of the magnet to create the dispersion through repulsion. We use neodymium magnets which are extremely strong magnets and hence their repulsion force is as strong as well.