Physical Computing

MARGE-Motorized Autonomous Robot Guide Earth Class by Student
September 22, 2009, 10:36 am
Filed under: Inspiration


This autonomous robot MARGE (Motorized Autonomous Robot Guide Earth Class) was build to guide a person in a corridor. It was my bachelor work that I did with ten other students Joakim Carlsson, Pierre Johansson, Viktor Jönsson, Sofia Rahiminejad, Tobias Bolmvik, Palmgren, Jacob Hidén Rudander, Sebastian Johansson, Joakim Sandberg and Victor Stensson.

MARGE contains a database over all rooms in a corridor the user then specifies which room it wants to with help of a touchpad and the screen and MARGE then shows the way. For navigations MARGE uses a webcamera and ID-bands in the roof to continuously keep track of it’s location. To find the fastest way in the corridor it implements the dijkstra algorithm that is an algorithm that uses nodes and finds out which nodes to go to get to the destination node the fastest. The navigation and positioning was done in the laptop that was communicating with an Atmel microcontroller, which also communicated with three other less powerful Atmel microcontrollers. These microcontrollers handled the locomotion, obstacle detection, charging of the two 12 V batteries.Motor and transmission

The locomotion was built around two DC motors originally built for electric scooters. To control the motors and heading of MARGE a PI regulator to regulate the speed of the motors was used. To get feedback rotation sensors the same as used in a wheel mouse were used. The obstacle detection was done using ultrasound, IR-range sensors and switches.

I think it’s fascinating what can be accomplished with computer power and sensors and a lot of hardwork. I haven’t check with the others if it’s okey to publish the two reports about MARGE so I can’t put them here.

Magnus Olofsson, Group 3


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