Archive for April, 2012

Mech Warfare 2012- The Final Match

Monday, April 30th, 2012

This year Mech Warfare had quite a few new upgrades. Between a new scoring system/server, a new arena and even more new competitors, there was a lot on the line. Well, we’re proud to report that Mech Warfare 2012 was a huge success. 15 qualifying teams battled it out to see whose mech would reign supreme.

In this video you’ll see the final Mech Warfare 2012 match. Squaring off were Mech Warfare 2011 Champion “Immortal” and our own Andrew Alter’s “Insanity Wolf”. This match was incredibly exciting not only because of the amazing technical ability of these two mechs but also because of the excellent piloting of their creators. Be sure to watch all the way through to see the conclusion to this down-to-the-wire match.

Stay tuned for more videos, pictures, and inside scoops on Mech Warfare 2012.

From the TRC: The MorpHex!

Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

Zenta's MorpHex Spherical Robot
WARNING: This post might make you think twice before you spin a globe violently or kick that unassuming ball down the street.

Our own TRC Member Zenta has posted an amazing video of his MorpHex Robot. The dream for this project was to ceate a spherical hexapod that can…

  • Roll freely as a ball
  • Move in any direction
  • Vary its inner-body dimensions
  • Transform between hexapod and sphere mode
  • Walk/work as a normal hexapod

By looking at the video, we’d say that the dream is a reality.

In hexapod mode, the MorpHex elegantly traverses terrain – then, very subtly, it begins to constrict its size until it’s ready to transform. In sphere mode the MorpHex can roll, stop and even dance around. And while there are a million things to love about the MorpHex, the fact that the body was constructed out of a earth globe is the cherry on top.

Zenta has entered the MorpHex into the Boca Bearing 2012 Innovation Competition and could win a $10,000 grant to further develop the MorpHex. We know who we’re voting for! Maybe one day we’ll see a whole army of MorpHexes rolling down the street!

For more history, pictures and general information about the MorpHex, check out the MorpHex section on Zenta’s Website

The Road to Mech Warfare: Score!

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Last week Mech Warfare Veteran Upgrayd came to Trossen Robotics to solder a batch of the new Mech Warfare transponder boards (You can see a video of him soldering the first batch of boards here.) In no time flat he had the boards built and ready to get sent out.

This year Mech Warfare is using a new custom built score keeping system – the MWScore System. Designed by Upgrayd, the MWScore System is completely open source (the MWScore Server, the transponder PCB files, and the transponder firmware are available for download here.)

The transponder interfaces with several force sensing resistors to register hits against the mech. These hit are reported to the MWScore Server via an Xbee connection, and displayed on the central server. The hit also triggers the new LED sub-board, that will flash 4-ultarbirght LEDs whenever a hit is registered. More details about the system are available at the MWScore site and this TRC forum post

Here’s a video of the scoring system in action.

“Read More” for more build pictures and another test video!