Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category


October 21, 2009 Meeting

October 21, 2009

Ben discussed the vision algorithm that is currently used.

Sat. Projects:
1. memory leak
2. encoders
3. waterproofing the atom
4. gps research
5. SICK and vision parallel

– Ashley


October 7, 2009 meeting notes

Saturday October 3, 2009 Workday:
Everyone worked on Andros. A problem with the control board was found. Also the bearings have been replaced and Andros is now ready for wheels and trac.

This coming Saturday projects:
work on camera, there is still an issue with the USB, and the control board bug

During the meeting we also talked about our “wishlist” that we will be presenting for 606 money.

__The Wishlist:__
1. USB Lidar $1175
2. I.M.U. $1495
3. New Atom $396
4. Tools $350
– Encoder board $110
– E-stop $50
– Cables $100
– Raw Mat. TechBot $700
– GPS $4600

After the meeting Ben Eckart gave a lecture on Intro to Python and Robotics Programming.
I believe he is posting his powerpoint presentation on the wikitdot. I am not sure though.

– Ashley


Sept. 30th meeting

We did not make a decision on whether we are going to work on Andros or Andros and Techbot. Then Dr. Canfield suggested that we separate each robot into little projects and whoever is interested can contact the leader of the project. If you are interested in becoming a leader of a project contact Tristan or Ben.

The current leaders

Mechanical Work- Tristan
Software- Ben

Mechanical- Tristan
Low-Level Control- Ben
High Level Control- Ben
Formulate Robot Control Architecture- Tristan
Sensors- Tristan

The leaders of these projects need to turn in to Timmy their 606 money requests by the end of Saturday.

If anyone is interested in advancing the algorithm used on the SICK lasers, that could be a project if you wanted to work on it.
Another project is syncing the SICK laser with the vision system.

If you are interested in a tutorial about the code on Andros, Ben is going to be at the lab at 10:00 Saturday to help those people.
A lecture will be given by Ben after the organizational meeting, next Wednesday. It will last about 45 minutes. The topic of this lecture is introduction to Python Programming. This is the type of programming used on Andros, so this will be very beneficial to new programmers.

– Ashley


ARC Officers

The 2009-2010 ARC officers are as follows:

President- Tristan Hill

Vice President – Marbin Pazos-Revilla

Chief Technical Officer- Benjamin Eckart

Treasurer- Timmy Smith

Publicity Director- Gerrit Coetzee

Secretary- Ashley Dishman


Status update!

With the electronics overhaul and chassis modifications complete, we are making quick progress towards qualification requirements.  Our current objective with TechBot is to qualify on our course using SICK and vision data using simple, efficient software using Python.  We have also moved towards a Linux environment, leaving Windows behind. More details will be given at the Monday meeting.


Winter Break

If you are wanting something to do this winter break, come on over to our lab and we’ll put you to work.  This is the best time to get on-board as you can quickly get up to speed on our platforms, and you will be a part of our robots coming together.  A nearly complete electronics overhaul is finished.  This allows the high-level navigation to be put to the test for TechBot.  There are several small projects that can be picked up that need to be done as well.  Hope to see you there!


Lecture 7: Robot Kinematics and Control – 10/27 5pm CH313B

Lecture location this week:  Clement Hall 313-B

This week’s lecture will be a little different.  Dr. Canfield will be covering robot kinematics and control.  In short, kinematics is characterizing how the robot moves.  Each robotic platform has differing movement patterns (e.g. traditional car steering versus skid-steering).  During this lecture, we will be in the computer lab CH313B.  Dr. Canfield will be walking us through how to simulate the kinematics and some control.

Lecture notes:  mobile-robot-kinematics


Lecture 6: Building Reliable Power Systems – 10/20 5pm BN241

Marbin will present on power distribution next in the lecture series.  He will cover the basics of power distribution, why we need it, what problems can arise, and how to fix those problems.  The current power layout for the TechBot will also be discussed.


Lecture 5: Low-Level Control – 10/6 5pm BN241

Low-level control essentially takes the directions and speeds from the high-level control (navigation) and converts it to voltages to power the drive motors.  We will cover open/closed loop methods, error correction algorithms, and discuss our approach for TechBot as well as some information on the MiniAndros.


Lecture 4: Robotics with Canfield – 9/29 5pm BN241

Dr. Canfield is going to present some more in-depth topics concerning robotics.  He has been doing robotic projects for quite some time and has a lot of great insight.  Hope to see you there.