Ideas

Several Design Enhancements/Suggested Features:
  • Sensors arranged in 45deg angles
  • Robust Localization Scheme (beacons on carrier)
  • High Power 4WD
  • Retains Turn-in-Place (higher power draw for skid steering)
  • Dedicated Processing for IR Sensors & Wheel Encoders
  • Short Range IR Sensors
  • Bump Switch
  • Integrated Color Detection
  • Faster (ARM7) Processors
    • AT91R40807 already in the club
    • Documentation for this chip is Here
  • Cliff Detection (more intelligent obstacle avoidance)
  • Rear-attachment point for rescue missions
  • Revamped ARCH station
  • ARCH circuitry integrated into main board
  • Switching power circuitry (instead of burning off power) for higher efficiency
  • Simple onboard diagnostics
  • 2-Axis Accelerometer
  • Absolute positioning based on relative reference to Colony Carrier or Static Beacon Array
  • External Accessory Port
    • Need to figure out a communication protocol, the ARM7 only has 2 UARTs unless we throw in a I2C or SPI chip which would be better for multiplexing the line

Sonar Adjustment
The sonar rangefinder has a "sensing cone" area that needs to clear any obstacle on the robot. Since in a typical vertical mounting application the sensing cone extends at an angle below and above horizontal, clearance issues may arise. To alleviate clearance under the sensing cone, the vertical mounting surface should "tip back" slightly so the bottom of the sensing cone is horizontal.

Drive System
  • Dedicated chip for PID loop (not necessary if we have multi-threading)
    • Adjust gain so multiplies can be done with bit shifts
    • Used fixed point implementation
  • Need (3) loops
    • (1) between the 2 wheels on each side
    • (1) between the two side PID loops
  • Active braking (instantaneous current inversion)
    • This can be toggled on/off
Accessories
  • Missile/Grenade Launcher
    • Use small hargrave compressor (24psig), solenoid valve, accumulator
    • Pan/tilt mechanism
    • Revolving turret for multiple firings
  • Extending ramp
    • Allows robots to coordinate to cross tall obstacles
    • Need 12" long ramp per robot height
  • Extended Duty Surveillance
    • Robot can support (3) LiIon packs
      • Total of 12Ah power source
    • Remaining rear space for camera or microphone array