Project Log

November 18, 2003: Lab day 4

Where: Jobst 248

What got done:

We have come to the conclusion that the life and or death of this project relies on the solar panel power output and the efficiency of the motors that will carry the little bug. We had previously worked on both problems jointly but have decided to divide and conquer. Ajax will research and find a better set of solar panels and I will find motors with the most punch for their current draw. Hopefully we can over engineer on each section so that we have more power than needed in each area.

Aside from these realizations we also got a bit of work done as well. We have perhaps found a new company to get solar panels from but are awaiting a response from them. Most of the lab day was spent researching these panels and relearning physics 110. A preliminary set of calculations have been completed for the motors as well. A function has been derived to calculate needed shaft torque based upon the radius of the shaft, radius of the wheel, mass of the wheel, and mass of the payload.

What needs doing:

Although good progress was made in lab we are still behind where we wanted to be a the start of this project. We are four weeks in and still do not have any usable equipment. With our new found knowledge we are better equipped to make new choices on what panels and motors to buy. We have heard back from our lab director about our chosen microctonroller. The verdict is that it needs more discussion. We will be meeting with the lab director later this week to discuss possible downfalls to our chosen board and hopefully be enlightened with his vast wisdom in such matters.

The goal for next week is to walk into lab with a motor and solar panel in mind. If we can get a parts list together we can discuss them all with the lab director at the same time. With any luck we will have components in before winter break. In the mean time we have various projects going for our project advisors and EE 419. We need to create a proposal for the project. Our project advisors also requested that we search existing patens on solar technology. They also requested that we create a data sheet for the project with all our projected data about the bug. Once again there is no shortage of things to do, unfortunately all of those things are currently paperwork.