Going into the final week of the building phase, the team is hard at work putting the finishing touches on every last piece of equipment and software. Although there was some delay due to the illness of both team members and mentors, they seem to be very confident in their abilities to meet the deadline.
The major focus of the team has been on one important element of the robot: the arm. Although the arm is near completion, it was not an easy task reaching that stage. According to most of the team, designing and building this piece of equipment was one of the hardest tasks out of the entire list of projects. The process was filled with all sorts of kinks and road blocks (such as a weak motor, problems calculating the correct weight for the arm, etc.) Still, they powered through, using their creative thinking skills to formulate a better design to solve the problems they had been facing.
The team realized the key issue regarding the contraption was its weight. It was too heavy for the motor to lift it. The team, with the help of Joe Viscomi and the other mentors, decided to attach springs from the base to the second length of metal, which the claw is attached to. This will balance the two equal parts, essentially lifting itself without the motor. Therefore, with the help of the motor, the arm will be able to serve its purpose as the hand of the machine.
One success of the week has been the completion of the drive program. Entering the last week, the robot is now able to turn and stop more precisely. This program will be finalized by the middle of this week. Going into the last eight days of competition, the team is racing the clock to complete the final tasks before the shipping deadline. The team will then travel to St. Louis to participate in the actual competition on the first weekend in March.
By: Sarah F, Sophomore, Brehm Preparatory SchoolFebruary 15th, 2007
Topic: Rack N Roll News, Robotics News, Team Produced News Tags: None