Day one at the Transdec in San Diego was a great success for Team SubjuGator. Our morning started at 6:30am. We quickly packed the pelican cases with the items necessary to run the sub all day. This turned out to be 2 medium pelicans and two small pelicans. Luckily, the sub (on its cart) and the four pelican cases fit perfectly inside our two Suburbans (thanks Dr. Schwartz). We arrived at the Transdec at 7:20am and began to setup our tent. Our new awesome SubjuGator banner stood out among all of the other teams making UF very visible to guests and judges. We were happy with this. But we were there to test the sub, so we got everything ready for our first water test at 9am.
Before we left Gainesville, we estimated the weight of our sub at 95 lbs. We made a small bet amongst team members what the actual weight of the sub would be on the competition scale (guesses between 99 and 105 lbs, the disqualification weight is 110 lbs so you can see why we were nervous to know the true weight). Luckily the sub weighed in at only 90 lbs! A good sigh of relief and focus shifted to testing as many missions as possible during our 12 hours at the Transdec on the first day.
The first water test didn’t start the way we would have hoped as the ethernet tether decided to stop working (after it had been working for several weeks without problems). Confirming that the waterproofing of the cable splice was infact the problem, we decided to remove the sub and resolder/waterproof the ethernet tether. Our first water test proved to be a waste of good pool time, but the tether was quickly fixed and we got back into the queue to enter the pool again.
Our second water test was much more successful. We were able to drive autonomously (without tether) through the validation gate and then immediately travel to the pinger and surface within the octagon. After not being able to do this the previous two years at the competition, we were extremely happy with out first successful water test.
Our third water test was also successful as we were able to debug the pipe and buoy missions.
Our hope for tomorrow is to continue debugging as many vision mission behaviors as possible so that we can post a high point score for the semi-final rounds on Friday and Saturday.
Be sure to keep up with our daily progress on our twitter account: SubjuGatorUF and check back here for daily blog updates!