Attaching the Fuel-Cube Conveyor to our Frame

After lots of discussion we finally decided to follow the KISS principle (Keep it Simpel Stupid) and build the conveyor belt mechanism after all.

We started by attaching the extrusions in an angle of 60 degrees to the frame. However the original frame is too far apart. That is why we calculated the needed offset of the conveyor extrusions and cut small aluminium pieces to accomodate for that. Additionally we cut smaller pieces to insert between the upper and the lower extrusion.

Extrusions of the conveyor attached to the frame (showing only one side)

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Attaching the Solar Panel Picker to our Frame

Yesterday and today we spent our time attaching the Solar Panel Picker to our frame. The challenge here was to build something that would lie flush against the ground but also not take up too much space in the robot. That is why we decided to build a loose joint in addition to the one driven by the servo.

Sketch for attaching the solar panel picker to the frame

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Participating at ‘Explore Science’

‚Explore Science‘ is a competition in Mannheim, Germany where students can participate and try to solve science and engineering tasks. The competition is organized by the Klaus-Tschira-Stiftung, a foundation from Klaus Tschira, one of the founders from SAP.

One of the tasks this year was collecting as many of 100 Ping-Pong-balls (each ball equals a point) as possible from a square wooden field with a side length of 1m and a 5cm high border. The robot had to fit completely on a DIN A3 paper, could not extend and had no height limitations. You can radio control the robot, however autonomously collected balls count twice for your score. Continue reading “Participating at ‘Explore Science’”

Calculating the Feasibility of the Soccer-Bot

Before building a soccer bot, we wanted to calculate whether our motors are actually strong enough to slide the fuel-cubes for six metres.

First we did an experiment to find out the friction coefficient of the grass and the cube. For this we laid the grass on a tilted ramp. Then we slid down the cube. We then tested for the maximal angle at which the fuel-cube would stop sliding.

Sketch of experiment for calculating the friction

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Collecting Ideas for the Fuel Cubes

Up until now we have been trying to build a extendable ramp with polycord for lifting the fuel cubes to the goals. However in the mean time new ideas have sprung up, all of which we discussed extensively.

The Ramp

The ramp is the idea that we have been building so far. But instead of making the whole thing extensible, we have thought of accelerating the cubes at the end of the first ramp fast enough to shoot them into the goals. We would still use an extension, but it will only be a guide for the cubes.

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Prototyping the Back of the Fuel Cube Collector: Conveyor

After having proved that our mechanism for the fuel cube collector using the pulleys works, we decided to build a better designed and stronger prototype.

The general idea for the construction sketched out in the picture below.

Sketch of the frame

For this we first had to plan out the construction. We wanted to drive one conveyor belt with one motors. For this we planned on connecting both sides with a chain underneath that runs underneath the cubes. The pulleys are mounted underneath the topmost extrusion to make building a joint easier. Continue reading “Prototyping the Back of the Fuel Cube Collector: Conveyor”

Testing Servo Joints for the Back of the Fuel Cube Collector

The ramps on which the fuel cubes will be transported to the goals needs to be longer than 50cm, so we will need something capable of unfolding.

For this we tested out several ways to build a joint with a servo. Some of them are more reliable than others, but sometimes require more space and material.

The first idea is built using the servo shaft adapter. The servo is simply mounted onto one extrusions and the other is connected by a hex-shaft and hex-pillow.

This is the most simple joint one can build, and it doesn’t require much space. However it is a bit flimsy and probably not enough for the rather big weight it must be able to lift.

Joint using servo shaft adapter

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