Hydroponics Robot Part 6 – Lane Navigation

In this blog post, I will be sharing the latest progress I made on my hydroponics robot. I last left it with goal accuracy issues and the wheel tread falling off.

I started off by gluing the wheel tread back onto the robot, and then proceeded to run it through the lane in laps. The robot was doing well overall, but I noticed that it seemed to get stuck when going around the corner from the start of each lane when going back to base. While it was able to recover on its own most of the time, I did encounter an error once that said “Invalid path, Path is empty.”

To address this issue, I hypothesized that moving the “start point” further out of the aisle might help the robot avoid the sharp corner. I tested this theory, and found that it seemed to work well. However, I also realized that part of the original problem was that after the robot reached the end of the aisle, I hadn’t tasked it with returning to the start of that aisle before moving to the next. It’s unclear which of these solutions had more of an effect, but the good news is that the robot no longer gets stuck at all.

Unfortunately, I ran into another issue – I was running very low on battery. I had to recharge the robot before I could continue testing. In addition to recharging the battery, I also started setting up recharger plates. I used copper pipe for the bot and copper plant tags spread across fencing tie wire for the charger connection. All of this was connected to a retail 12v battery charger.

Overall, I’m happy with the progress I made on Part 5 of the project. I was able to identify and address a key issue that was causing the robot to get stuck, and I also started setting up a recharging system. I will continue to work on this project and keep you updated on my progress. Thanks for reading!







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