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HIGH SCHOOL ROBOTICS TEAM MAKES THE MOST OF MOTION PLASTICS

05-07-2018
by 
in 

Treotham Automation has been sponsoring an all-girl robotics team by supplying them with linear slides and energy chain. Team Artemis from Abbotsleigh Senior School in Sydney has been competing in both the First Lego League (FLL) and the First Robotics Competition (FRC).

The team, which includes girls from Years 7 to 11 has a mission statement of “STEM for a fairer world” and tries to embody this in everything it sets out to do.

This year’s FRC game “Power Up” involved robots delivering cubes to different areas on the field to score points. The vault is an area on the end of each field where cubes are delivered to earn points and gain “powerups”. The switch is a short seesaw like contraption where points are given to the team that has it tilted in its favour. And the scale is similar to the switch, but much taller.

The Artemis robot for 2018 has a pneumatic controlled gripper intake with compliant wheels and a two-stage elevator that can lift the cubes to well over 2 metres. This allows it to place cubes into the vault and onto the switch.

To build the two-stage elevator, initially team Artemis only had access to linear slides that were half the height needed, and half of these were igus drylin N type slides, which are not as strong as the larger drylin W slides. Treotham subsequently provided four lengths of 1.2m drylin W slides and carriages.

Using AutoCAD Fusion 360, team Artemis completed a nested elevator design with the slides that would lift the intake mechanism holding the cube to well over 2m. A geared 300W winch using 3mm cable lifts the elevator through a series of pulleys to the top position.

Even through the intake mechanism and cube were a considerable overhanging weight on the slides, the team were able to run the lift incredibly smoothly and use gravity to return it to the bottom. Treotham also provided 4m of energy chain to help manage the wires and pneumatic lines required for the intake as it moved to its full height and back.

At the competition, the lift and igus drylin W linear slides worked flawlessly, allowing team Artemis to successfully run the robot and place the cubes onto the scale - the biggest goal for the season. There were a few issues with the autonomous period operation, but the team scored cubes into the vault and high switch to make up for it.

For the upcoming off-season competition in July, team Artemis plan to mount a hook and additional winch to the lift so that they can lift the robot off the ground during the endgame to gain even more points. And they are confident that the drylin W slides will be strong enough to pull the robot up.

The software team is also hard at work to improve the autonomous code to use the gyro and encoders that are installed.

The Year 11 students of team Atemis are also currently creating a second, high-speed robot called Artemoose for the event.

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