Visual Recognition Robot

built by David Mitchell

Target Environment Locomotion Method
Indoors Static
Sensors / Input Devices Actuators / Output Devices
phototransistor array
arm actuators
stepper motor
status LEDs
Control Method Power Source
Autonomous N/A
CPU Type Operating System
Z80 None
Programming Lanuage Weight
Assembly N/A
Time to build Cost to build
URL for more information
This robot was built in 1986, and did quite well in a science competition. This robot is an 'arm' robot with a very large 'eye'. Basically it works like this - you feed the arm a piece of clear acetate (~5cm x 12cm) with a dark geometric shape on it, the arm grabs the acetate and moves it in front of its 'eye' the shape is 'scanned' and if it is square in shape the arm places it in the "square" bin, if it is a triangle, circle, trapezoid it is placed in the "others" bin. The arm robot is a simple polar type (rotation, up/down, wrist rotate, and gripper) robot using microswitch sensing. The 'eye' is a linear array of 16 phototransistors and lenses which is scanned across a visual field by a stepper motor via a toothed belt. The robot used a Z-80 CPU which was programmed in machine code using the method of 'burn', test and 'reburn'. It used about 1k of memory. The Status LEDs on the 'eye' - display the intensity of light on the phototransistors which is useful when debugging, the status lights on the Z-80 box were real, but put there for show.

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