Sumobot

Sumobot

Sumobot

Sumobot

Building an autonomous competition robot

Building an autonomous competition robot

Building an autonomous competition robot

Building an autonomous competition robot

Client

Client

Cooper Union ME353

Cooper Union ME353

My Role

My Role

Design Lead

Design Lead

Year

Year

2022

2022

Services

Skills

PM, Design

PM, Design

Objective

The project involved designing and building a Sumobot to compete in a robot sumo competition. Sumobots are fully automated robots designed to push their opponents out of a designated ring. The design process involved creating a physically powerful robot with a well-planned strategy to outplay opponents. The engineering challenges included designing the external and internal components of the robot, such as the use of sensors, motors, feedback control, and code.

The Problem

Build a robust robot to push the other robot out of the “ring”

Approach

To address these competition requirements and propose a unique shell design, the team took the following approach:

  1. Sumo bot Research

  2. Iterative 3D designs

  3. Turning 3D designs into 2D Manufacturing plans

  4. Metal Laser Cutting:

  5. Metal Bending

  6. Soldering and Assembly


Results

The team utilized recurring design techniques in Sumobot competitions, such as wedges, skirts, and surface coatings, to gain strategic advantages over opponents. The exterior design of the robot aimed to execute a ramped fork strategy inspired by the wedge and skirt techniques. The ramp lifted the opposing robot to reduce traction, while the fork trapped the robot to prevent it from escaping. The robot had three tiers, with the first tier housing a white skirt that made it difficult for other robots to go underneath, blocked out light from IR sensors, and triggered opposing IR sensors. The middle tier shielded the wheels and motors, while the top tier served to shield the electronics and provide easy access to components during competition.

The design employed a defense-heavy approach rather than the agile-styled robots, with the motors having a 63:1 gear ratio to optimize both power and speed. The ⅛” aluminum shell and ⅜” acrylic base plate provided structural stability to the robot, with the shell and baseplate bolted together with M3 screws to keep the robot's shape during collisions. All electronics were placed on the mid-tier to keep the center of mass low.


Conclusion

Overall, the project aimed to create a well-designed and fabricated robot that was physically powerful and had a well-planned strategy to outplay opponents. By utilizing recurring design techniques and engineering principles such as sensors, motors, feedback control, and code, the team successfully built a Sumobot that could compete in Sumobot competitions.


Key skills used in this Sumobot Design and Engineering Project:

  • Mechanical design and fabrication using Solidworks, Fusion 360, 3D printing, and aluminum bending

  • Electrical and electronic design using assembly, C, and C++

  • Coding and programming for automation and feedback control

  • Sensor selection and implementation

  • Understanding of robotics and mechatronics principles

  • Problem-solving and creative thinking

  • Project management and time management

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