Our group’s first idea was to make robot that cleaned big office glass windows, having the robot move across the floor and up the window. That did not work because the upwards motion would go against the gravity. This led to making a robot that cleans whiteboards.
Our idea for making the whiteboard was to make a robot/moving cart that moves left and right across the top the board. Also, the robot would have an expo eraser at the end of the pole that moved up and down the board. First, our group worked on making a holder for the motor, which took a long time. Rhinoceros, a 3-D software modeling program, was a challenge to use at first. It was a new software we have never used. After the holder was designed on Rhinoceros, it was time to print this piece in the laser cutter. This is also another process because we had to make different versions of the piece and use different materials that included paper, cardboard and wood. The designs that were made along the way changed very much. It started out as a little cart that moved with four wheels across the floor and then changed into a cart that moved across the top of a white board.
One day of working on the project, a few problems occurred on how to move the robot across the whiteboard. Our group decided to build double tracks, out of wood, and put them on both sides of the board and have the cart move along them with two wheels on one side and another wheel on the other, which would be attached to a motor. Also, there would be four holders across the whiteboard to make sure the track was stable. Then the wheels were made out of acrylic so it would ride across the tracks. This feature finally made our robot move smoothly across the board.
When our group first started this project we did not finish, so we are now finishing it for our independent projects. We decided to take this opportunity to work on it because we felt very passionate about making it work. Our main focus was how to make this move vertically so it would actually clean the entire whiteboard.
First, the decision was to use a threaded rod and two wooden rods as the mechanism that will create the up and down motion. Also, switches were added to the ends of the robot so it would hit the ends of the track, so the robot would know when to go left and right. Then a switch was added to the bottom of the robot so it would know when to move up and down.
Once the programming was done on Arduino our group remade the robot holder. The box design makes the project easier to work and all the cords will all be placed in this box so it looks very neat. Overall, we loved being part of this project and are extremely proud of what we accomplished.