Product: Camping: Tent
Nitinol Tent Poles   (+5, -2)  [vote for, against]
Memory wire self erecting tent

When you deform Nitinol, and then heat it to around 50 degrees centigrade, it returns to its exact original shape. You can also get it to return to its original shape by sending an electrical current through it.

If tent poles were made from Nitinol, you could have it pop-up on demand by sending a current through it, and when you want to pack it away, you would scrunch or fold it up and it would stay folded until you next need it.

While it's up, a small battery powered device could pulse every now and then to ensure it survives high winds while you're in it.

This is better than a pop-up tent because it would be easy to pack away once the device is turned off, and wouldn't be under strain while it's packed up.

Of course, once it's packed up in your bag, make sure you don't leave it out in the sun...
-- mitxela, Oct 19 2008

(sound of snoring, then shrieking)

"Ahhhhhh! What happened? Is it a bear?"

"No, the battery probably went dead again".
-- normzone, Oct 20 2008

Indeed, one wonders how much power it would take...

An alternative would be to create it out of an alloy which returns at body temperature, so hopefully while you're inside, the ambient temperature of the air should keep it up.

Of course then if it starts snowing, your tent falls over.
-- mitxela, Oct 21 2008

A car boot in summer can easily reach 50C, at least around here. I predict ensuing hilarity.
-- BunsenHoneydew, Oct 24 2008

once nitinol goes to its memory shape from the heat, it stays there like a normal wire unless you put undue pressure , enough to bend normal metal. so you dont need a constant charge to keep its shape.
-- Arcanus, Jul 20 2009

random, halfbakery