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Robot Ideas

Detachable ramp
One of the groups main ideas was a detachable ramp. This is a
block of wood which the enemy robot will drive up when colliding
with our robot. There will be a spike in the middle of the ramp which
will immobilise the robot, with their wheels lifted off the ground. This
leaves them unable to drive and thus unable to complete a given
task. The ramp can then detach so our robot can move away from
the immobilised robot.

The biggest issue was finding a reliable way to

detach the ramp. Our first thought as an
electromagnet, but since an electromagnet takes
significant current, it would be a challenge to
make sure the ramp is fixed strong enough to
take a hit from an opposition robot. Our idea was
to connect it through a nail and rail sliding
The 2 nails on the back of the ramp will slide onto the front
of the robot. This will be held in place by a hook.

When the ramp needs to be deployed, the motor will turn

the hook, unhooking the ramp, allowing it to move
independently of the robot.

This seemed like a promising idea, but all felt over

complicated for the outcome, especially the likelihood of
getting the enemy directly onto the ramp and hook in a

Reversing is advantageous as it allows us to get out of tight situations, especially when
in a corner. The motors can reverse if the polarity is switched on them. In order for the
robot to reverse, a double pole relay would be the most effective component to do so,
as they can deal with high current without heat being an issue unlike transistors.
However a relays coil cannot be switched on many times per second, in order to
perform the Pulse-Width Modulation that allows us to control the speed of the robot. A
relay is ideal for reverse as we are unlikely to switch directions many times per second.
This is the circuit that has been designed to be compatible with reversing, where the
switch is toggled by a coil that is not visible in the diagram.

Double Voltage
If we applied more voltage to the motors, we
could get more torque. This would allow our robot
to push opponents as our driving force will be
greater than theirs. This would be done using a
second battery. This would increase the weight of
our robot significantly, making it more difficult to
accelerate. The reason why we didn't go through
with it is because we would need to upgrade all
of our circuitry to support 24V, and that the
current taken by the motors will be much greater
than the 10 Amp fuse in the robot. Given how
late we thought of the idea, it was not practical to
have a secondary battery for more torque.