Electrical engineering architect, software co-author

Deliverable

A miniature welded frame and a BOM and drawing of our bike.

Product Impact

Immense progress on welding skills and confidence. Learned how to specify parts for design and understand compatibility.

Mechatronics BigBird Robot (ME 218B)

Challenge

Design an autonomous robot that could detect various frequencies emitted by the“MINERS” (the red beacon in the right picture) and move them to an active square on the game board where they could score points.

Outcome

An integrated hardware & software solution that enabled our robot to navigate the board and communicate with an information-providing device using SPI to score points in a contest against another bot.

Background

As part of the second course in the Mechatronics series, our team fabricated an integrated software and hardware platform that allowed us to play against other robots. To score points, our robot had to locate various MINERS (IR beacons) located around the board and detect the frequency of their signals. If that frequency matched our team assignment for the round, our robot would approach the beacon, turn on an electromagnet and "grab" the beacon. After getting information from the SPUD (an informative bot created by our TAs), we navigated to one of our team's home squares where we deposited the MINER and began to mine it for points.

Along our journey, we encountered troublesome electrical noise issues that consumed our attention. This required us to creatively problem-solve and reduce the complexity of our design. While this was one of the toughest challenges I’ve faced yet in a project, my team’s positivity and determination to succeed enabled us to eventually achieve our goals.

My Role
Key Learnings

Implementing hierarchicial state machines, SPI protocols, circuit design, C, git management, noise troubleshooting

Timeline

3 weeks, February 2020