January 13, 2018
Today the team gave their mock-up presentations. Each student was asked to create a mock-up for one aspect of the robot as a first step into the engineering design process. Students came up with grabbing or scooping mechanisms, climbing mechanisms, or hanging mechanisms that they felt would work best for this year’s game, Power Up. With a variety to pick from, the team will now go forth with prototyping a few of the mock-up designs, to fine tune a mock-up and create something more functional than cardboard that can be tested. Groups of students will now partner up with mentors to prototype and collaborate.
In addition to presenting the mock-ups, the team decided on a drive system to use. The main choices were between two types of tank drives (on the left and in the center of the picture) or mecanum drive (on the right). Students were able to voice their opinions and the team went through the pros and cons of both types of drives. For the tank drive, it was decided that there was more strength there if we were to get pushed around, but less maneuverability around the field. As for the mecanum drive, there was increased maneuverability as it can glide and slide in different directions, and it can move fast. The downside to the mecanum drive is that it can be pushed easily and has less grip on the wheels. In the end, maneuverability won and the mecanum drive was picked for the base of the robot as it was agreed on that being able to turn more freely would be a benefit in this year’s game.
Today the team also got to work cleaning the old field and surrounding areas. Since moving the machine shop, we’ll need to sort out the necessities for building the bot and only take what we think we’ll need down to the shop. A big de-cluttering is ahead of us, but with teamwork, we’ll get it done in no time!
Next Week Sneak Peak:
Next week will be prototype week, stay tuned to see how the mechanisms advance with gears, motors, plywood, and maybe some metal! Next Saturday each group will be presenting their prototypes!