Archive for the 'robots' Category

BattleBots is Back!

Sunday, April 12th, 2009

That’s right. After almost 8 years, BattleBots is returning to television. The next competition that will be aired is taking place up in the East Bay on April 24-25. Since it is a college competition, Christian Carlberg and myself are mentoring a group of Cal Poly students and entering CHUNK, a middleweight (120lb.) vertical spinner. We’ve published a few demo videos (make sure to click on the HD link) consisting of:

There are still some modifications to be done over the next week, but we’ve had no structural issues so far. *crosses fingers* A list of our competition can be found at BuildersDB. Time to bring them some pain!

2nd Place!

Saturday, August 9th, 2008

Success! Slobotics has officially taken second place in the 2008 NASA Lunar Excavation Centennial Challenge. While no team achieved the ambitious goal of meeting the 150kg target, we did manage to put on quite a show and prove our engineering abilities. Since that was our stated goal going in, we’re stoked.

Some quick details:
25 teams registered
16 teams attended the competition
8 teams actually competed
4 teams managed to move from the starting position - yes, we were one of them

After the official competition, we had the opportunity to demonstrate both our behavioral algorithms that allow autonomy as well as our digging mechanism. Without rocks in the regolith, our robot performed spectacularly, meeting design expectations in most cases and exceeding them in others. Although we’re all completely worn out from the crazy prep time leading up to the event, we’re ready and excited for next year’s competition.

On a personal note, I have to say that I’ve sincerely enjoyed the intereactions with each and every person I’ve met as a result of this event. Professional, intelligent, and kind - everyone. Already, I’ve considered meeting everyone a priviledge - only moreso as our path forward inevitably involves interactions with some of these great people.

Pictures and links on the official page.


Saturday, March 29th, 2008

So things are really starting to take off in robot-land. A team of Cal Poly engineers (alum), including myself, are officially forming SLObotics as a company to develop and market new technologies relating to the fast-evolving field of robotics. Right now we’re focused on our design for the upcoming NASA Centennial Challenge this summer, but we’re also well into the development of our first product. We’re especially excited because of recent developments with Cal Poly. After realizing that NASA was holding a national competition on Poly’s campus this summer, and also realizing that Cal Poly had no entry, the dean of the College of Engineering approached us and asked SLObotics to officially partner with the College and represent the University. We’re both grateful and stoked at the opportunity, especially when we started talking about our longer-term goals for SLObotics. Needless to say, having access to the resources at Cal Poly will help get us off the ground much faster than trying to go it alone. So we’re stoked. Now it’s just a matter of taking care of all the details and somehow managing to squeeze the W2 job in there somewhere. Things are definitely looking up though!