Robotics 101

So, after two long evenings (ok, nights) I’ve finally finished Robo 1.0.  Below, you’ll see the result.  I’ve equipped the initial version with the full suite of sensors including the ultrasonic and sound sensors.

For Robo v1.0 I decided to go with a "vehicle" mode over a "creature" or "android" style of design.  There are a couple of reasons I went in that direction, in short: Faster design process, ease of weight factoring and less control/movement issues (for programming later).

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My vehicle design stems from my wish to keep a servo separate for other purposes.  This means two servos for movement, thus, a tri-wheeled design.  The second photo (below) shows the assembly of the rear wheel combination.  I used two wheels to help balance the unit on turns.

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So, the first draft had the servos turning the wheels directly, but the design of the servos made it a tad bit tough to layout the CPU (the ‘Intelligence brick’) flat on top – which helps keep the vehicle balanced.

Thus, I used meshing cogs which provided a bit of a challenge, but seems to work fine (as below).  This also provided storage for the cabling (underneath).  It’s still possible to remove the ‘Intelligence Brick’ for battery replacement without having to rip the whole unit apart.

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Next post: programming the little beastie with the Robotics Studio and the NTX Software.  Turns out it’s possible to connect via Bluetooth and USB, and the robot can accept Bluetooth messages so it’ll be interesting to see what can be done with it.

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