Day 3: Prototyping continued, Autonomous strategies, and more

Autonomous Strategy

Today, we discussed scoring all three balls in autonomous. In autonomous, only the area directly in front of the low goal is guaranteed to be undefended. The strategy would involve starting with one ball in the robot, one in front and one behind. The robot would immediately drop an intake on each side of the robot and drive to the hot goal to score, dragging the balls with it. We also discovered that a banner sensor was able to pick up the reflective tape, meaning that the robot wouldn’t need to a camera to detect the hot zones.

We discussed whether it was more beneficial to shoot from afar or really close to the goal. Several team members proposed that shooting 2-4 feet away would be best since it would more than likely increase the robot’s accuracy. The fly wheel shooter was set up about 3-4 feet away from the goal and was able to successfully score

Catapult Prototype

Catapult Prototype

A group today worked on a catapult prototype. A good amount of progress was made and it seems to be coming along well. The only things left to add are the rope, springs and hard stops.

Ball Catcher

Some of the students worked on a basic catcher prototype, making it from PVC pipe. They added a funnel to the top to increase the likelihood of the ball going in. It worked out well with some minor strengthening.


The programming team worked on a basic autonomous runner that uses threading. In essence, it allows for commands to be run while still allowing evaluation to occur. Also, in the event that a command should fail or timeout, the robot will skip the rest of the commands. One of the ideas that was brought up was separate compilation for the main code and autonomous routine to allow for quick changes to the autonomous without having to recompile the whole codebase.