The team has been busy working to improve the software architecture of SubjuGator 7 throughout the spring semester. We have had several successful tests at the pool. Noteworthy successes include:
- Automated routines for magnetometer calibration
- Automated routines for compass calibration
- A C4 continuous trajectory generator with coordinated Euclidean motion
- Numerous controller bug fixes and improvements including compensation for directional thruster performance
- Added abilities to command pitch and roll maneuvers as part of mission behaviors
Additional software improvements and redesigns include:
- Newly structured worker classes which now provide event status information to governing workers
- The ability to control and monitor workers using a commander interface
- The ability for workers to detect faults and restart themselves as needed
- New python-based scripting support for mission behaviors
- New GUI interfaces for sub status/visualization
In addition to numerous software changes, we have also moved our external actuator system to pneumatics. Our previous system relied on inexpensive (but hard to waterproof) solenoids, thus motivating the move to an entirely pneumatic system for control of the shooter, ball dropper, and grabber. 2012 will feature all new shooter and grabber mechanisms as well. SEACON has been kind enough to help us reduce some of our weight by providing new power cables and bulkheads for the interconnections with the battery pods.
We hope to continue our forward momentum into summer and continuously improve on the vehicle’s performance. We are on track to have over 200 hours of testing time in the pool this summer before the competition, a great improvement over the 20 hours of test time we had before the competition last summer.
We have uploaded several new videos to our Youtube account which demonstrate our new pneumatic system and our improved control performance. You can view these in the Media section of the website.