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  • Our initial idea was to make a flying car that could flip it's wheels up and turn into a quadcopter.  We quickly decided against that because it was complicated and needed gyros for stable flight. We decided to make a hovercraft that could go over different terrain. We started by with a design that used a single propeller for lift and two small propellers for forward movement and steering.  Unfurunately, the lift propellar had to much force and spun the whole hover car. The second desing used two motors that are counter rotating to stop the hover car from spinning. The hover car was made from foam core and had basic support frames. We added decorative frames that made it look like a Dodge Challenger / Charger. We call it the AeroXcar. We used Rhino every step of the way to make all the pieces for the hover car. All our pieces were laser cut out of foam core and the motor mounts were out of thin wood. The AeroXcar includes a arduino mini which is programmed to allow remote control of the lift motors. The back 2 mini motors are controlled by the arduino and can control the motors at diferent speeds to stop spin and turn. There is a 6 channel receiver that connects to a controller. The left stick turns the lift propellers on while the right stick is used to turn the hover car. We use a Lithium Polymer battery to power our car. If we had more time we would put bigger motors on the back that would make it go forward faster and turn better. 

  • Our vehicle is a state of the art car that can drive extremely fast, but, this vehicle is no sports car! No, it's George The Rhino! George is a special model of the super duper fast, ball shooting, horn ramming soccer car! Yes, you heard me right George is a soccer car!

    Our original idea was just a simple rocket league car that rammed soccer balls and hoped to score a goal. After some thinking, we realized that it was too bland, too easy. So we amped it up a bit by adding a rhino theme. We meant to add a rhino head trailing flame on the side but, that's just a design. Nothing hard or complicated. So of course, being the teenage boys that we were, we added crossbows. Yeah, crossbows. Makes sense on a rhino, doesn't it? We planned on a conveyor belt to hold mini crossbows that rained down on our enemy's. There was only one problem. We had no enemies; we were just your average soccer car. So we changed it to just one crossbow because it was cool. We still had no enemies though so eventually the crossbow turned into a ball shooter under the excuse of attempting to control the ball. The first idea was a funnel that the balls sat in and one at a time they would go down the chute and get punched by some mechanism. This approach changed to it shoots from the side because the horn was in the way. It then changed to a funnel that was right above the ball shooter. This idea made it much easier, but it didn't work out so well. Then came the brainstorming of how to fix the problem. We came up with the idea of the chamber or magazine attached to the shooter. The result was a box with a ramp in which the balls would rest. When they fell into a small section at the front of the box, a solenoid would punch the ball sending it shooting forward and (hopefully) hitting the ball.

    The design of George the Rhino changed a lot over the time we had. The first model wasn't a rhino at all, and it was more or less a big mess, but that was just the first prototype; however, the first model gave us the idea to base the car after a rhino in the first place. We were designing the second prototype when we ran into some problems. We couldn't decide on what ideas to add to George and what not to add. There was an idea of a booster on the back, a crossbow, and much more. Everyone kept giving us new ideas and advice, and we all got very confused and frustrated. This minor setback lost us about a day, but we got back on track quickly. We finally decided on the ball shooter, a ramming mechanism on the front, and paddles to control the ball, and we quickly designed and built our second prototype. As we thought, there were many errors; however, this did not set us back. We kept finding and fixing the mistakes until everything was ready in the design. We assembled George the Rhino in 3D, just to make sure everything worked. We laser cut the new model out of thin wood, and there were still one or two things we missed. We quickly fixed those and assembled and attached the wheels and motors. We added the electronics and built the ram and attached it. 

  • Our problem was designing a safe and creative way to make a car based on the delorean from Back To The Future that leaves a trail of fire.The solution that we came up with was a cylinder that has 3 tubes of flammable liquid that use ball bearings rolling on the ground  to leave a trail that can then be lit with the components of a lighter. With the ball bearings laying down purell and rubbing alcohol our lighter could be rotated down with the servo and light it behind the car. This vesion was much safer and was less likely to burn our vehicle.

    Out brainstorming session showed how hard it would be to do this safely. Our original idea was a model delorean from back to the future that leaves a trail of fire.the idea we started with was a normal car design with a syringe and a lighter on both sides, with the syinge between the wheels and the lighters behind the back wheels. This idea was scrapped after we realised how hard it would be to keep the lighters sasfely attached and on the entire time. This idea was also shot down because we hanced apon our second real idea while talking with the councillors. As we talked and the idea was given thought our second idea formed. Our second idea was a car based on a lobster. The idea had a lobster like shape going backwards. The two protruding limbs have wheels in them and the "head" of the car holds the motors that we will attach the better wheels to. This is when we found out about deoderant gel ball dispensers. The gel ball dispensers are tubes that have little balls at the end of them that when rolled leave a trail of liquid. Once we had the design down we started cuting out of wood. The wooden design fit togetther a lot better than the cardboard ones and we were able to incorperate a servo mount for our gel ball bearings. We moddified the servo to make it go 0-360 degrees rather than the normal 0-179 degrees. The servo turns the tube holder continuosly so we only have to light one stream of our fuel and it would light the others eventually. we also added our lighitng mechanism in the wood model. There is a lighter attached to a servo that when activated angles the lighter to the ground and lights the fuel. With the final design we also made a rotating cylinder


  • Problem:

    In film it is difficult to steadily and realistically capture shots that illustrate a wide range of perspectives while in motion. This problem especially exists for those without access to professional film equipment. 

    Solution:

    A user friendly robot that follows a predetermined path has remote controlled camera atop its base. The remote controlled feature of the camera allows the videographer to control camera angles without intervening the shot. 

    Detailed Solution:

    The small robot follows a a strip of black tape that allows you to stand back while the robot takes the shot. While the robot is moving you can adjust the position of the camera from a distance using the remote control. This provides a clean shot without having the inconsistency of human movement. 

    Main Theme:

    Our main theme was to show perspective by using height in a steady way. It follows a predetermined line and has a remote controlled head. Our project started out by focusing on the different perspective idea, but then the focus shifted to the remote control focus to distance humans from the wooden box. Our biggest challenge was the programing part, the following line coding.

  • Today we finished our final idea. Our final idea had to get through many prototyping, drawing and editng stages to get where we are. There were many ideas about the design and even though at first we didnt like the idea we finally came through to make it. Even our final idea had ideas because there were many different pieces to make and design and at some points it seemed like we had finalized some part we realized that there was something wrong with that idea. The idea that we finally came up with was originally pushed to the side because we thought that we had a better idea. But in fact it actually was going to be to hard to assemble and the final was a more concrete idea. Our idea went through many stages including cardboard and hand drawings.

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  • Ever wanted to recreate the racecars from your favorite video games or movies? What about bringing to life your favorite concept car? Vroom your way through this Studio by creating your own remote control (RC) model racecar inspired by vehicles from Grand Theft Auto, Burnout, Need for Speed, Tron, Batman, Fast and Furious, Speedracer and more. Learn about all the components that make your vehicle go vroom - motors, batteries, engines, radio signals, types of chassis and wheels, robotic intelligence - and push your vehicle to the creative limit with an innovative design!

    In this Studio, students will be constructing futuristic robo-electric cars! These cars will be designed to maneuver and turn in agile ways and speed across a race course. Students will ride the waves of radio frequency and modulation, thus understanding transmitters, receivers, and RC communication. Other topics of discussion include on-road versus off-road suspension, how RC models compare to full-sized cars, and levels of robotic intelligence (automaton, remote control, teleoperation, full autonomy). Students will experience the hands-on joy of soldering, drilling, and building circuits before applying a custom paint job for the finishing touch. Then it’s off to the races in a final exhibition where the cars will race-off in the Robo Cars showdown!

    Register here!

    Focus Skills/Subjects/Technologies:

      Design

      Physics (Electricity, Magnetism)

      Engineering

      Programming

      Electronics

       Robotics (Arduino)

      Sensors & Actuators

       Digital Fabrication (Laser-cutting, 3d Printing)

       3d Modeling

    Prerequisites:

    • Enrolling students must be between the ages of 11 to 18 (middle and high school students)


  • Problem:

    In film it is difficult to steadily and realistically capture shots that illustrate a wide range of perspectives while in motion. This problem especially exists for those without access to professional film equipment. 

    Solution:

    A user friendly robot that follows a predetermined path has remote controlled camera atop its base. The remote controlled feature of the camera allows the videographer to control camera angles without intervening the shot. 

    Detailed Solution:

    The small robot follows a a strip of black tape that allows you to stand back while the robot takes the shot. While the robot is moving you can adjust the position of the camera from a distance using the remote control. This provides a clean shot without having the inconsistency of human movement. 

    Main Theme:

    Our main theme was to show perspective by using height in a steady way. It follows a predetermined line and has a remote controlled head. Our project started out by focusing on the different perspective idea, but then the focus shifted to the remote control focus to distance humans from the wooden box. Our biggest challenge was the programing part, the following line coding.

  • The OmniCar exists in a future overpopulated world. It serves the function of allowing the driver to avoid other drivers and people with its agile maneuverability. The original idea for the OmniCar was to have three spherical drive wheels. We redesigned the OmniCar because we realized that getting the three powered wheels to be coordinated would be nearly impossible to accomplish in two weeks. We decided on one large wheel because the car would work just as well with one drive wheel and it would not require complex coordination. Along with the original three wheeled design, we were going to have an accelerometer in the palm of our hand and a knob to turn for throttle control. We changed this design slightly, and excluded the knob and instead just kept the accelerometer. The direction and speed are now controlled by tilting the glove that the electronics are attached to. We left the car uncovered to show the drive wheel and how it works.

    The next thing that we would do is improve the drive wheel to increase the speed and to improve the stepper motor that we used to turn the gears to give it better functionality. One of our biggest challenges was that we spent a lot of our time designing parts that would later become unnecessary. Another big challenge that we faced was that the stepper motor did not turn the drive motor to the correct angle because it did not have enough torque to overcome the resistance of the gears.

  • Our project, Cylindero, is a radio controlled vehicle with lights, and is capable of driving at fairly high speeds. Now completed, the interior electronic components of Cylindero are no longer visible. Cylindero is constructed of 3d printed plastic components, most of which were designed in the early stages by us. Our concept has changed since the beginning, for practicality and structural reasons, but it is very close to what we originally planned, and for that we are proud. We did, however, face design challengs which we were forced to overcome. For one, a base problem of Cylindero is its main design. For it to work, the motors must be the centerpiece, not the arduino or battery. The whole construct would have to be suspended from the motors, meaning both the cylinder wheels and the outer cylinder would need to be able to take a lot of strain from continous running. To solve this problem we chose sturdy motors, but in addition we replaced the motor axle with a sturdier mount (or hub) to connect to the cylinder wheels. Another problem we faced was spinning of the interior. If not properly secured, the interior of Cylindero would spin instead of the exterior (the same reason why a flying machine with one blade would not work). The motors needed leverage, something to push against. To solve this problem we suspended all the weight below the motors, however it does still remain a technical difficulty that is a product of its desgin. We will now demonstrate this vehicle's power in action...

  • In a world where aliens have invaded and destroyed New York City, the iron structures of the skyscrapers are all that is left. Humans have developed this vehicle to climb up the frames and escape from the aliens whose inner magnetism render the iron structures deadly. 

    This vehicle uses magnetic treads to stick to magnetic metal surfaces. The vehicle is controlled by a remote control, which make the two motors drive the treads forwards. The 3-D printed treads are attached to a wooden frame, which holds the magnets in place. 

  • The Geared Vehicle is for a time in the future when quicksand covers 90% of the earth. This vehicle is able to elegantly traverse even the most dangerous quicksand pits using its innovative geared wheeled system. The vehicle is able to both go straight and backwards. And by bilaterally disengaging the gears, the vehicle is able to turn left and right. After the Great Sandstorm, human survival will depend on vehicles like this to allow us to continue to traverse great swaths of what is now a giant desert.

  • Our final product is a car with wings that flap, wheels that can be controlled, and LED lights that change color based on the control of the wheels.

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