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Hack an optical mouse to detect seismic vibrations with a simple laser source, a hacked mouse lens and a physical cantilever arm setup.

The “seis-mouse-meter” was part of the 2020 Frugal Science course (, where we were challenged with solving crowd sourced global problems with frugal solutions. Our chosen problem was to detect and warn of crop raiding elephants in rural India. Our hack was to use an optical mouse’s image sensor and high speed surface features detection hardware to sense minute vibrations created in the ground when these heavy animals walk or rumble or talk to each other.”

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