Friday, June 15, 2012

Week 2: The robot moves!

The last two days were a huge success! I managed to get a fully functioning carriage move back and forth, powered from a stepper motor using a code from an Arduino!  I'd like to say it was my ingenuity that solved my carriage problems, but most of the credit really goes to the lubrication properties of WD40.

This shows the carriage assembly in the coolers that I'll be using for the experiments.


 And, a video of the action:


video

Unfortunately this drama with the carriage has put me behind schedule a bit.  The flume is nearly assembled, next week will involve assembling the flume, figuring out how to take pictures with a webcam using an arduino, and final programming for the arduino code (not the most exciting or photogenic of activities).  I don't think I'll actually get to calibrating and testing the setup until week 4. 

On the plus side, I've now figured out how to make and bought all of the necessary components for all of the different aspects of this project.  Just in time too, I've nearly reached the end of the budget!

In other news, there's great low tides next week!  I plan on going on collecting field trip, and finding some nice algae to use for the first few algae pressings.

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