Difference between revisions of "C.A.E.S.A.R. BOT"

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m (Progress Log: First project update; chassis cut out and motors running.)
m (Changed project status to "Early Implementation".)
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|Last Updated={{#time: H:i, d F Y| {{REVISIONTIMESTAMP}} }} (CDT)              <!--DO NOT EDIT -->

Revision as of 22:50, 30 September 2012

Early Implementation
Born On:
07:31, 22 May 2012 (CDT)
Last Updated:
22:50, 30 September 2012 (CDT)


C.A.E.S.A.R. stands for "Cute And Edgy Sumo Attack Robot", and is my team's entry into the Mini-Sumo Robot Competition hosted by Auburn University SPaRC. The objective of the competition is to build a small, autonomous robot that is capable of pushing a competing robot out of a sumo ring. The requirements for entry into the competition are as follows:

  • The robot must fully fit inside a 10 cm by 10 cm starting area, but there are no height restrictions.
  • The robot must weigh no more than 0.5 kg.
  • The robot must use up to two of the Solarbotics GM9 motors with the RM2 Motor drop-in replacement for driving the robot.
  • Full rules can be found on the Robotics Society website.



Currently (v0.1), the chassis design is a long wedge that initially starts off vertically (in order to fit in the starting area), which then falls down at the start of the match. This design gives C.A.E.S.A.R Bot a nice long ramp that can get underneath the opponent's robot’s wheels for easier pushing. It will most likely be built out of lasercut plywood or acrylic, depending on the strength of each material.

Enemy Detection

Enemies need to be detected in order to design an effective algorithm to push the other robot out of the ring. Below are some of the sensor possibilities (will probably end up using a combination of both):

Sharp IR Sensor:

  • Benefits:
    • Long line of sight
    • Only one input pin needed
    • Fast measurements
  • Drawbacks:
    • Narrow beam width
    • Not effective against dark colored robots
    • Moderately costly
    • Measurements can be noisy, depending on the environment
  • Cost: $12.95 (one on hand)

Ping Sensor:

  • Benefits:
    • Accurate
    • Wide beam width
    • Only two input pins needed
    • Low cost
  • Drawbacks:
    • Not effective against fuzzy robots
    • Echo problems
  • Cost: $2.39 (not purchased)

Edge Detection

Pololu QTR-1RC Reflectance Sensor:

  • Benefits:
    • Easy-to-use
    • Accurate
    • Quick
  • Drawbacks:
    • Small range
  • Cost: 3 @ $4.14 each (not purchased)


In v0.1, the C.A.E.S.A.R. Bot chassis is designed to be lasercut out of a single 9"x12" piece of material. The v0.1 testing prototype was made out of 5.2mm plywood, but the design can be easily modified to work with acrylic sheet.

Other materials needed for v0.1 include:

  • (4x) #6 Bolts - 1 1/2"
  • (4x) #6 Flat Washers
  • (4x) #6 Lock Washers


In order to control and power the robot, a microcontroller, motor driver, and power source are needed. We are going to try to use parts that are currently on hand:

Microcontroller: Arduino Pro Mini 328 16MHz

  • Cost: $10.38 (purchased)

Motor Driver: L293 Compact Motor Driver

  • Cost: $4.29 (purchased)

Battery: 1300mAh LiPo 7.4v 2S 25C battery

  • Cost: $5.36 (purchased)

Cost Analysis

Listed below are the estimated costs associated with v0.1 of the robot. This does not include the cost of entry into the competition, and the motors are included with the entry fee.

Part Cost Each Qty. Needed Qty. Purchased
Sharp IR Sensor $12.95 1 1
Ping Sensor $2.39 1 0
Pololu QTR-1RC $4.14 3 0
5.2mm Plywood $0.90/sq.ft. 1 1
Arduino Pro Mini $10.38 1 1
L293 Motor Driver $4.29 1 1
1300mAh LiPo $5.36 1 1
Total $48.69

Progress Log

22:49, 30 September 2012 (CDT): I have created and cut out a basic chassis for the robot, and made some modifications to the design to add stability. Basic motor control has been programmed for the Arduino and motor board.

Design Files