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Do you want to know how amazing was our week right before getting to RoboGames?

“We missed the metro that would have taken us to the airport on time. This was in part due to a very slow guy walking downstairs in front of us, and in part due to me and angel trying to pay for the tickets with a $10 bill and a credit card at the same time, which confused the hell out of the machine.”

Jesus wrote an awesome summary of our experience getting there. Check it out Here

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For the first time ever, Spain has been competing in RoboGames (Formerly known as ROBOlympics). Jesus and I have been representing Spain and SLU under the team name “RoboMadness”. Thanks to people like Bob Allen, Ted Larson, Tony, Simone and David Calkins, we have had an awesome weekend in Silicon Valley… Well, besides spending a great time there, we also got three medals with the three robots that we took with us.

Jesus y Angel

This is how we did in the contest:

  • BalanBot was the first robot getting a Silver medal for Spain. Thanks to his incredible driving skills, Jesus beat Bob and Ted, Gold medalists in 2009. So it is a great achievement for the first time competing there.
  • Escalador, in spite of all the technical problems that we ran into, gave us our second Silver medal. We are shutting for the gold medal in 2011 since our mechanical and electrical design was probably the best there. We just need more powerful batteries.
  • TupperBot finally won the Gold Medal being the “Best of Show” . I still dont really like the idea of competing with TupperBot, but it seems to always work. As most of you know, the last time I competed was 4 years ago… in 2006 I got the first prize at MadridBot, held in Colegio Antonio Machado (Madrid) competing in “Prueba Libre”, wich is basically the same free style category that we found in RoboGames. Thanks to MadridBot I started making more robots but I didn’t really compete in any other event. Now all that passion that has been growing in me for those 4 years has taken me to get a Gold Medal in the ROBOlympics, held in San Antonio, known as Silicon Valley, worlds capital of engineering and technology.

From now on, ROBOlympics is a Mandatory event in our agendas, so we will be there next year trying to get even more medals competing in even more categories.

Robot builders, please, keep making your amazing machines… keep imagining the present, keep designing the future.

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I will explain more later, but here you have some good code working for a line tracking robot that I have been developing within the last few months.

The camera connection and handlers are based in the awesome CatchItV

Download the code here (If the file is password protected is bc I am making relevant changes, but if you still want to use it just send me an email and I’ll tell you the code to use it under your responsability)

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Folks, this is the first time I show something about my Senior Design Project. As I said in previous posts, I am working with another 6 engineers in an Underwater Robot to compete in the AUVSI this summer in San Diego.

Here you have what it seems to be the final design for the vertical thrusters of this exciting project… If you want to see it working underwater just wait for Thursday and more videos and pictures will be posted of this amazing thruster running in its “natural environment”

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If you are working with powerful motors or other applications that require high current you might be interested in measuring the bunch of Amps running through your wires… sometimes a simple resistor is just not enough due to high currents and so on, so a good idea is to use this hall-effect sensor: ACS754

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As I mentioned in a previous post, there is a project going on right now in SLU where Boeing Engineers and Parks Students, are working in two teams to make a robotics showcase in Spring of 2010. Here is the article on the newspaper. (I have to explain that I know Robotics is Popular in US, but in SLU we still need to make it more popular, we are making huge steps, but is still needs to grow up I much more)

University News 12-03-09 small

I want to thank Matt Wilhelm and Allison Reilly for helping and their words to me in the article. Awesome Job guys!

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IMG_40002

Friday, November 13th

5:00 pm: “No dude! I cannot go to the Happy hour at Iggy’s tonight, I would love to get those Margaritas, but I have the Black Box competition tomorrow

5:30 pm: “Can I have a Pitcher of frozen Margarita?”

4:30 am (Text to my roommate): “Priyam, I’ve lost my keys, so I cannot get home, I’ll stay somewhere tonight, but make sure you call me at 8:00am tomorrow so I make it to the contest”

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I know, I’m not being very good at publishing stuff lately, but it doesn’t mean that I’m not doing anything… It is more like I’m “too busy lately” so let me just give a brief summary of the stuff I’m working on this semester:

  1. BilliSub (AUV): This is my senior design project with six Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. This project is about designing an underwater robot to compete in the AUVSI contest that will take place this summer in San Francisco. For more information on this project go to the BilliSub’s website (http://csss.slu.edu/~auv)
  2. Research: At SLU I work as a Research Assistant for the Electrical and Computer Engineering department, and these are the projects I have done working for them so far:
      • SD card data collector: I am working on this project right now which consists on collecting data from different sensors on an airplane and save that data into a regular SD card to be read once the airplane lands.
      • Intelligent Bridge: I developed a program that collects a bunch of sensor data measuring the stress on different parts of a scaled bridge and calculates the virtual position of a train cart.
  3. CubeSat: This project is one of the most interesting and  highly funded at Saint Louis University. It is about making a small (10×10x10cm) satellite that will be launched to space as soon as it gets done. One of the needs of that project is to have a good power board that can charge LIPO batteries and provide enough power out of the multiple solar cells surrounding the satellite.   
  4. IEEE Projects: As president of the IEEE student branch association, I am involved in different activities that are currently still being developed:
      1. Micro Sumo collaborative robots: I started this project to make a workshop at a high school here in Saint Louis. Sadly we didn’t have the chance to give the actual workshop, but the robots are still being developed. Check this link to know more about this project.
      2. Disco Lights: Jesus Dominguez, mechanical engineer here at SLU, started this project and I helped him improve the idea by using the SkyRGB that Ricardo Gomez and I designed for Campus Party in El Salvador. To know more about the progress of this project check out this link.
      3. BOEING and SLU robotics show case
  5. Contests: I like to compete in different contests, and here in the States there are some interesting ones:
      1. I2P: The Idea To Product contest is about presenting a new and innovative idea to several judges from the industry. The first stage of this contest took place at SLU on November the 6th of 2009. Thanks to the BillikenBot Project, Blanca Ollero and I got the 2nd place ($1000). The next step is the regional I2P competition against universities from Texas, Kansas, Illinois, Michigan and Indiana in March.
      2. Black-Box: This regional competition was about Electronics analysis. On November 14th Priyam Chackravarty and I went, with another two teams from the IEEE student branch at SLU, to the University of Missouri-Rolla to participate in this interesting contest. We didn’t have any experience with this kind of competition but we got 2nd place ($300) anyway, so we were pretty happy about that.
  6. Campus Party: there is no way I miss that week… Campus Party time comes and I am there, working hard to coordinate the Robotics Area along with Jose J. Ariza. this year will be full of news about this interesting project such as the next edition of Campus Party: Campus Party Europe.

 

And that is why I don’t have the time I need to write on my blogs… But I will do my best to keep up and keeping you informed about all this stuff!

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TupperBot Vs. US Army

TupperBot Vs. US Army

Couple of months ago the well known First Robotics Competitio took place here, in Saint Louis University.

Of course TupperBot was there, playing with kids and explorirng the competition. During his exploration he found a new friend, and they decided to play toghether for a while.

 

PS: Josshua, this robot is too big just for me… we should think about making a team to bit him up!

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BillikenBot

BillikenBot

Today I want to introduce you to the last in University Mascots. BillikenBot.

Blanca Ollero, Alberto Jiménez and me decided to start a new personal and profesional project: Create an interactive robot designed to be a University Mascot. In our case we are going to create it for Saint Louis University. The well known Billiken will shortly become alive and start walking around the campus and talking to the students and visitors.

Here you have much more information:
www.BillikenBot.com

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