The AMD Jerry Sanders Creative Design Competition is an annual robotics competition held at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). Each year robots compete to collect and score game pieces in four-robot free-for-all matches. The game rules and course layout change each year, promoting new robot designs and innovation. The robots have human drivers, but autonomous code is often used to improve control. Illinois Tech Robotics has been competing at JSDC for several years. At the 2010 competition, our robots Fenrir and Colonel made their exciting JSDC debut, and Roslund became the 2010 champion in a thrilling final match and tie-breaker round. ITR Goliath was then introduced 2013 followed by 2 all new entries in 2014, Penguin and Modulus.
FIRST Robotics Volunteering
Illinois Tech Robotics exists to serve. Our founders formed the team for the purpose of working with FIRST programs by getting involved. Illinois Tech Robotics strongly encourages members to be involved in FIRST through giving their time to local teams. ITR provides teams with engineering students, who understand the challenge, and assist the high school students in their endeavors. We also inform our members of all FIRST events going on around the city, and encourage them to go volunteer. In the past we have volunteered at events such as the IL FLL State Championship, Chicago FTC Kickoff, FTC Scrimmages, IL FTC Championship, FTC Milwaukee, Chicago FRC Kickoff, Midwest Regional, North Star Regional, and World Championships.
Fenrir is a two-wheeled gravity-drive robot. Fenrir's unique design makes it a very fast and agile robot, but also an interesting challenge to control. You can find the current controller code at our github repo: https://github.com/illinoistechrobotics/fenrir.
Roslund is a simple frame robot with mechanum drive. Mechanum wheels have rollers at a 45° angle to the wheel plane, which allows the robot to have omnidirectional movement. Roslund was the winner of JSDC in 2010 and 2011. Roslund was also awarded the best design award by Grant Imahara (from the Mythbusters) a couple years back.
Golaith is designed to effectively compete in the annual Jerry Sanders Design Competition. Goliath is based on a relatively simple drive base consisting of a basic square steel frame, 2 large drive wheels powered by 3HP Ampflow Magmotors and two steel ball casters. The simplicity of this design makes Goliath a very durable and reliable robot that is able to easily withstand encounters with other robots and course obstacles. In addition, this robot was designed such that the center of mass is low to the ground and as close as possible to the drive wheels which, when coupled with its powerful drivetrain, allows it to easily climb and descend relatively steep inclines as well as move very slowly and precisely when necessary. Overall, these design features enable Goliath to reliably perform many competition tasks with minimal impact from any obstacles encountered along the way.
Modulus uses a crab drive propulsion system and is primarily based off the FIRST robotics kit. A crab drive system consists of a 4 wheel base where each wheel can rotate independently without turning the entire body. This can be very useful for competitions where mobility is important such as JSDC.
Icarus is a quadcopter (a four-rotor helicopter) that is able to lift more weight and is more agile than a standard helicopter. But these benefits come at a cost of stability and require many electronic sensors to maintain stable flight. We are currently working on an RC car to tether to Icarus toact as a manipulator. This way it can pull Icarus close to balls without blowing them away and pick them up. The manipulator will be used during competitions such as JSDC.
Our club received a donation of 30 Roombas. We have decided to build a robotic swarm using them. This swarm will be able to communicate with each other to work together to fulfill a task. Possible tasks that we have thought of include mapping, search and rescue, and playing sports. We are currently using Arduinos to control the Roombas through their on-board commands.
Fancy Pants is a lower extremity exoskeleton and is one of the older projects at ITR. It is currently undergoing a significant redesign with the goals of increasing precision, comfort and safety. Although this exo needs a lot of work before it will be hurling someone 15 feet into the air safely, it has potential for greatness.
Mongol is designed to compete in Mech-Warfare. In Mech-Warfare, all robots must walk on 2 or 4 legs as a means of propulsion. Each robot is also equipped with airsoft cannons and impact sensor plates. Each robot is given a certain number of 'hits' and is pitted against competitors in model cityscape to where the object of the competition is to reduce each opponents hits to zero before falling to zero themselves. Meanwhile, though able to be remote controlled, each robot's pilot cannot view the robot directly and must control the robot with visual information coming only from a wireless camera on the robot itself. Mongol was designed entirely in SolidWorks. For more information about Mech-Warfare visit mech-warfare.com
This project is a new approach to the Mech Warfare competition and legged robot design. Not only does this robot have a set of legs as opposed to wheels for travel over rough terrain, but it is also equipped with a pair of turret style airsoft guns as well as a camera to give an inside feel to the computer operated controls. During the Mech Warfare competition, it will also come prepared with a rotating turret style head which will allow for quick response which is necessity when competing against fast moving opponents. Additional objectives for this project will be planned after its first successful participation in the Mech Warfare competition later this year. For more information about Mech-Warfare visit mech-warfare.com
Mach 3 is our award winning pumpkin launcher from the 2015 Pumpkin Launch which uses centripetal force to launch pumpkins. A 5HP, 3 phase industrial motor and variable frequency drive is used to spin up the launching arm to approximately 200 RPM and then a second custom designed control system releases the pumpkin on command from a laptop connected via WiFi. There is an optical sensor on the launcher providing input to the controller to signal when the arm is at the proper angle to release the pumpkin. This allows the launcher to consistently throw the pumpkin at the ideal launch angle to acheive the maximum possible distance.
Jimmy as in Jimmy Hendrix is a guitar playing robot recently starting up. The goal is to be able to input sheet music and have the robot play the music autonomously.