The Vexmen of Brandywine Robotics

Blog Post

Vexmen Spring Classes Available Starting March 31 and April 1

It’s the end of the regular Vexmen season so that means it’s time for the Spring educational sessions where we teach the real ins and outs of building an awesome robot.

We know the spring gets really full really quickly with other activities and the 6th grade center is among them. So we will have to be a bit flexible on our meeting dates. We also have a week in April Chris and I will not be available – so it will not be 8 consecutive weeks.

Each class is a $100 per student fee with parent mentors wishing to stay for free

Tuesday class starting 3/31: build techniques and basic robot programming strategies taught by Chris Hallahan. Tuesday class sign up here:

Wednesday class starting 4/1: advanced programming techniques culminating in PID tuning (so I do mean advanced) using virtual worlds taught by Glenn McMillen. Wednesday class sign up here:

Tuesday Build Techniques class syllabus:

This class is aimed primarily at roboteers who have completed their first season in robotics and can now appreciate the finer points of robot construction and assembly. At the end of this course, students should be able to construct a more stable and stronger robot than at the beginning of class. They will be introduced to the engineering design process and how it applies to Vex robotics (so you can have an awesome design notebook next season)

* Topic 1: Intro, Understanding subsystems, Developing design requirements, Engineering your base
* Topic 2: “Keep the box strong” how to make a solid base, Engineering your base part 2
* Topic 3: Engineering Notebooks and New Game Review
* Topic 4: Wheel selection, Drive trains, Engineering your base part 3
* Topic 5: Gears and ratios, Keeping it Square, Engineering your Base part 4
* Topic 6: Motors, Keeping power in mind, Engineering your base part 5
* Topic 7: Basics of RobotC, Driver Control vs. Autonomous
* Topic 8: Sensors, Planning your robot’s programming

Wednesday Control Loop Programming Techniques class syllabus:

This class is aimed at roboteers who have some experience in robotics and Robot C who want to control their robot better. This class will use Robot C Virtual Worlds to program a virtual robot. At the end of this class roboteers will be able to program and tune a PID control loop so their robot can stop on a dime, hold a lift at a set height using push button controls, and use various sensors to accomplish this. They will be introduced to various physics and trig for use in their autonomous programming.

* Topic 1 – functions, tasks and structures; robot C virtual world set up
* Topic 2 – logging and processing data to the debug stream
* Topic 3 – proportional control and New Game Review
* Topic 4 – using encoders for distance & using ultrasonics – game 1
* Topic 5 – using the gyro for turns, line followers to reset position – game 2
* Topic 6 – measuring velocity and acceleration and possibly using them as controls too
* Topic 7 – PID tuning (multiple weeks)
* Topic 8 – PID tuning (multiple weeks).