This is Alex. David came over yesterday to work on the robots because he's going to be out of town for the Labor Day, so I'm going to write down what we did.
First, we worked on the robot with the treads, which we were trying to gear down. Nick had attached one tread to it on Thursday, so David and I attached the other tread in the same way. When that was done, we found out that it kept falling over backwards because there was too much weight in the back, and there was nothing to hold it up, so we made a castor wheel that held it up and still let it turn and move freely. It worked pretty well, as long as we remembered to put it in the right position before we ran the program.
David and Alex with the robot.
After that, we started to work on the ice core mission. David wrote the program and I built the arm. We got a motor attached on the robot and also made an attachment that lets it pick up the ice core. We also added a touch sensor, so that it can drive forward until the touch sensor hits the wall, then turn the motor to pull out the ice core. The program works pretty well, but I think we have to adjust the position of the touch sensor. We also have to fix the castor wheel to prevent the robot from driving into the wall. The castor wheel has difficulty going over all the little bumps in the mat without moving out of position.
The robot with the motorized arm for the ice core mission attached.