Project Description

The Mars Rover Project continues the work of the Robotic Platform Design by Robert Shockency and Randall Satterthwaite and initiated by the 2001 Telerobotic platform., in which a third party robotic platform was used.
The Precision Robotic Platform project consisted of designing, constructing, and testing a robotic platform for use in various autonomous mobile platform applications including telerobotics. The system was comprised of two Pittman motors, an H-bridge motor driver, two CPLDs and an EMAC 8051 microprocessor. Variable PWM signals were generated for precise turning and speed control and synchronized RPM data received from rotary decoders kept the platform on a precise heading. Lack of a more powerful CPU precluded operation as a web server and transmission of images from a web camera at a reasonable rate.
The main objective of the Mars Rover Project is to redesign the Precision Robotic Platform for long battery life so it operates for a 7 day period without recharging. In addition, a powerful PC 104 based CPU is used, in addition to an EMAC 8051 microprocessor, to allow the platform to operate as a mobile web and image server. In particular, the PC104 computer runs high level software to control the interface between the user and the Mars Rover. The EMAC 8051 microprocessor translates interpreted user's commands into specific platform operations.

Project Members:

Dan Dunn

Colin Shea

Eric Spiller

Project Advisors

Dr. Brian Huggins

Dr. Alexander Malinowski

Mr. Chris Mattus