Monday, January 05, 2009

days 2 and 3 of the build season

We have been working on finishing setting up the control system and brainstorming robot designs.

Yesterday (with the help of the amazing Karlin) we finished the bulk of the setup of the new control system. When we finally turned it on, we got lots of blinky green lights (something that rarely happens in robotics when you first turn something on). Doug bought us an AMAZING printer (probably the nicest in the whole school...) as well as some other goodies (3 types of wire strippers, heat shrink etc.).

Today we worked on finishing the control system testing. We almost finished (the motors do everything they are supposed to do when they are supposed to do it!). All we have left is setting up the wireless system (new this year with the new control system). We also did some more brainstorming. One of our ideas involved conveyer belts to draw the balls up and hold them for dumping into other teams' trailers. We also prototyped some other designs (hook and Doug's "salad bowl" idea") The hook didn't work very well, but the salad bowls were a promising gripper. Our concern is that the salad bowls might not be able to deal with high enough volumes of balls. This would make it hard to score many points with the moon rocks (2 points ea), but would be good for the final 20 second period when we need to place the super cell in the trailer of an opposing team.

We are also planning on replacing the mecanum wheels from last year's robot with the kit wheels from this year's kop to see what driving is like. Marsha picked up the competition floor material (very slippery!) so we can drive on that to see what it's like.

That's all for tonight. Tomorrow Tobi and Divya are starting at 3:00 and I will be there around 4:45.( I am dropping off materials at IDEO for the trailer) If you would like to help Tobi and Divya please join them at 3:00, if not, please plan on attending at 4:45.

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