How, when and what
Now I would like to tell you how everything works - from the beginning until the end. What have the people achieved in order to giving birth to me. It was an amazing and exciting work.
If you are interested in getting more information take a look at the official document from Systemtechnikprojekt´18:
Finding solutions and concept decision
Here is where everything has begun. The members of our team first got to know each other and the ideas came quickly. We gathered many of them, some were multifarious, others were simple and some of them were even really exotic.
This milestone is divided into three blocks:
Getting to know each other
In diesem Meilenstein gibt es drei definierte Ziele:
In this milestone there are three defined goals:
- Description of the system
- List of requirements
- Working plan
The team was very motivated and the first ideas were born already.
- Description of the system
- List of requirements
- Working plan
What is necessary to build a robot?
Internal and external factors that play an important role in the robot´s development were defined. The building site, the surface of the ground (external), the communication and the user interface (internal) are some examples of these factors.
Have a look at the document:
What will our customer require
In this part of the milestone not only all the factors were analysed but also the requirements of the customer. We had to join the perspective of the customer and developer. Any small fact can play an important role.
In order to getting to a complete and thorough list of requirements all the teams have been working together here.
Last version of the list of requirements:
Every group needs an order
It is very important that every person of the team knows his role. It is also very important that every member of the team gets information about everything.
This is the first structure of a plan. Time is running out and it runs quickly.
These are the team structure and the working plan:
Ideas, sketches, … How can we do that? … the goal was defined. We will build a super robot! But how? Different ideas came together but quickly we noticed that the process was also very important. The next questions came up: Will both robots have the same functions or will they play different roles?... What will be best?... Questions over questions.
- Morphologic box
Ideas on paper
At this point some examples of the first sketches can be seen. Everything was sketched; the drive system, different ideas to lift the Lego blocks up, how the delivery of the blocks has to be done and also how the robots have to work on the playground. Not all the participants have experience in technical drawing, but anyway, all of them drew something.
Putting the ideas together (finding solutions)
Concept 1: building and loading robot
In this concept both robots have to complete the same sub-functions. That means that both robots go for the blocks and build the lighthouse together. The robot can stock various blocks on a circular belt conveyor that turn 90° during the rotation over an arrester. The stocked blocks can be grabbed with a claw system. This system can rotate 180° and is moveable in the vertical centerline. This way the blocks get the correct position for building the lighthouse.
Concept 2: loading robot
This concept is built to get and to hand over blocks. For a high efficiency we decided to take a solution that is similar to the solution we took for stocking the blocks as in concept one. The blocks can be stocked on a turntable with various mechanical claws. Because of the rotation of the slice the blocks are brought into the right position automatically. After all the blocks have been loaded this robot can hand over the blocks to the building robot one by one.
Concept 3: building robot
This concept is oriented toward taking over the blocks and building the lighthouse. First, the robot goes for the lighthouse module and moves to the building lot. This is where the loading robot – while handing over the blocks – places every block on the building platform under the lighthouse module. With an elevating movement through the claw system the lighthouse module is getting pressed onto the block. Then the claw grabs the lowest block of the lighthouse and lifts it up. These steps are being repeated as long as the desired height is reached. When the lighthouse is built entirely the robot can pivot the building platform and put the lighthouse on the floor.
Taking a decision
A lot of different ideas were suggested and I among them. Now the best idea had to be chosen. The group thought that I will be a good candidate for this project and also the teachers had the same opinion. I´m going to be a lighthouse builder robot!
As a loading robot I will go for the blocks and hand them over to the robot of the partner team (team 8).
I was the chosen one!
- My body
- My nervous system
- My brain
Short description of my structure
So am I. The red part is my traction system which enables me to move. The motors (for the traction and the cablecar) are shown in orange. You can see the cablecar in yellow. With the cablecar all the blocks are taken along with the help of magnets and stocked. The slide that is taken for handing over the blocks to the robot of team 8 is displayed in blue.
The traction system
The traction system moves towards direction X and Y. The toothed wheels are getting grip on the lego floor. This makes it easy to know my exact position.
The cablecar is the main component of my structure. Here the magnets (parts in turquoise) are being placed. With them the blocks are getting taken and transported. Each block has a metallic ball for magnetic attraction.
As soon as I have collected all the blocks and I am in the right position for the robot of team 8, the slide is going to be released with the help of an electro magnet. The slide is going to be fixed at the robot of team 8 and the blocks can be handed over.
This way everything gets connected
All the parts of my structure need energy. These parts have to be connected to each other in order to work properly – this is the challenge for the electronics team. Only if the connection between software and hardware works properly I will be able to work. Here you can see a part of my nervous system, the print boards, which were developed by the electronics.
"Cogito, ergo sum" ("I think, therefore I am")
This sentence from the philosopher René Descartes explains that it is not possible to be developed without intelligence. In my case the intelligence is the software.
The job of the informatics team is to help the robot to take decisions. With the program the informatics team develops the robot knows its exact position, knows, where to take over the blocks and how many of them it has to load. To provide a perfect hand over of the blocks it is very important to know where the robot of the partner team is situated.
It is important to structure the robot’s work. The job is not only to write a program but also test programs are necessary in order to check other sub-functions.
At this point of the process of the project all the designs got checked by the tutors. They checked how to improve the traction system, how to simplify the programs, etc.
Each department had its own revision which allowed to improve the designs.
Now the next steps could follow: building a robot.
Presenting the sub-functions
In this milestone the sub-functions were launched. Almost all my structures were built, the print boards got finished and the electronics team was able to solder almost all the electronic components. Time came to test all the functions with the test program in order to find all the potential errors.
Traction system, cablecar and slide
Functionality of the sensors
This is one of the last steps of the project. The final report has to be written. Now it is time to document everything and to finalize the website. The last trials were done. The nervousness is increasing. We have almost come to an end. I am incredibly looking forward to proving everybody what I am able to do!!!