05. mini–project: 3D form machine

(sketches 25 Feb; structure & mechanism 4 March; working demo 18 March)

The project goal is to build a device that:

    a) takes sensory input

    b) outputs three (or two) dimensional material form

For example, inputs could be potentiometers that you turn to control the material output, distance sensors that you dance or gesture in front of to control material output, or bend sensors worn in a glove that you flex to control material output.

The material output (think 3D printer) might be bent wire, chocolate, hot glue, spray insulating foam, ice, clay, popcorn…  You may build an additive device that accretes material, or a subtractive device that mills or cuts material away (or both!)

You may choose to build a 2D device, if you have a great idea; however wheeled vehicle robots mounted with a pen, chalk, etc. are frowned upon (nothing wrong with them per se; it’s just too easy and standard—we’re looking for out-of-the-box solutions).

The purpose of this mini-project is for you to

    a) learn to control motors with external power (servomotors; DC gear motors)
    b) experiment with physical mechanisms

    c) design and build a small project from A to Z.

Criteria for excellence: functional (you can demo it), innovative, well-crafted (robust, no Scotch tape)

In order to keep this project on track, please post:

25 Feb: Well-thought-through design drawings showing how the device will work, including mechanism and movement, material feed (if appropriate), and relationship between sensor and output.  Bill of materials (electronics and motors) needed.

4 March: Photos / Videos of built, physical structure and working mechanism (without microcontroller, sensors, motors).

18 March: Complete description (i.e., video, drawings, code, text) of the device; and demonstrate the device in class.


~ by mdgross on February 19, 2010.

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