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STEM Proposal - Home Aid Robot for The

Physically Impaired
By Farees Siddiqui, Arturo LeMonaco & Matt Daigle
Group Members
Arturo Lomonaco Farees Siddiqui Matt Daigle
Block C Block C Block C
SCH3U1-01 SCH3U1-01 SPH3U1-03
Chemistry Chemistry Physics
Mrs. Rampersad Mrs. Rampersad Mr. Keeves
Rm 320 Rm 320 Rm 302

The Product
A semi autonomous robot to help the physically impaired with strenuous tasks around the house, Such as picking
up heavy boxes and equipment. The consumer can control the product manually or have it follow a preplanned
route.

The Drive
The Prototyped robot’s drive will be an H-Drive (Drive #2 in the
figure on the right), rather than the X-Drive (Drive #1 in the figure
on the right). The H-Drive, which has all 4 wheels aligned in parallel
to each other can move forward and backwards and spin to the
desired direction whereas the X-Drive, is much better in the sense
that it is capable of strafing, and moving in 8 different directions, as
well as spin to the desired direction. But we will not be using a X-
Drive for this product because this product is targeted for the
physically impaired and the X-Drive needs a lot of maintenance,
which would not be convenient for the user. As per the strafing
issue we can fix that by just adding one wheel mounted right under
the center of gravity of our robot with one motor attached to it to
be able to strafe.

The Coding
There will be plenty of coding required to operate the robot in its
autonomous patrol mode. We will need encoders to measure and
allow the robot to travel exact distances, since time is heavily
inaccurate and can be influenced by minimal factors such as battery
level, and surface friction. However the encoders will help with this issue they will not eliminate it completely,
the encoders alone mounted on the motors will give us a success rate of about 60% which is not ideal when
moving such heavy objects. This is because the reading from the optical shaft encoders will be subject to noise if
they are mounted on the motors. This happens because the encoder value is directly proportional to the motor
value at all times, this would sound like a benefit but the motors slip a lot, this means when the motor gets to the
required target it still has plenty of momentum that pushes the robot forward approximately another 3-6 inches
which throws off the subsequent movements. This issue can be fixed by mounting the encoder on unpowered
wheels and applying a PID algorithm programmatically to help improve accuracy. A Proportional Integral
Derivative (or PID) loop, is a control loop used on almost every machine to help improve the accuracy of the
STEM Proposal - Home Aid Robot for The
Physically Impaired
By Farees Siddiqui, Arturo LeMonaco & Matt Daigle
machine when performing complex tasks where there is minimal human input. PID is a control algorithm used in
machinery to improve accuracy, how it works is it adjusts the speed being sent to the motors by doing constant
calculations and adjusting the speed accordingly. This works by adding three terms together in your program
denoted by P, I, and D. To use the PID algorithm you should first know what error means. Error is the difference
between where the robot is and where you want the robot to be. The P is calculated by multiplying the error by a
constant denoted by kP (this constant can be named anything it just has to be constant) with this constant alone
you will see that the robot constantly oscillates around the desired target. To fix the oscillation we can add the I
term. The I term is calculated by multiplying the accumulation of error over time by a constant denoted by kI.
This fixes the oscillation caused by the old P controller. The PI control loop explained so far can be sufficient but
adding the last D term can be desirable at certain times. This term can be desirable because the robot can take a
long time to adjust at certain times, the D term is calculated by multiplying the rate of change of error by a constant
denoted by D, what this does is if the robot spends too much time away from the target the algorithm is sped up
and if it get too close to the target to quickly it is slowed down. (See Picture attached for the programmed PID
algorithm). Another thing we will be adding is a color detection camera. This camera will be able to track a piece
of reflective tape attached to the user and will follow the user. (See Picture Below) we will also be using a vex
gyroscope to have more accurate turns (PID will also be applied to the gyroscope).
STEM Proposal - Home Aid Robot for The
Physically Impaired
By Farees Siddiqui, Arturo LeMonaco & Matt Daigle

(Drive PID, Same logic for Lift PID)


The Lifting Mechanism
In order to Lift heavy objects we will be using a scissor lift design. A scissor is a type of lift that can be compressed
into a really small form factor, our lift will have a maximum height of approximately seven feet and when
compressed will be less than 18 inches tall. Because of this the robot can be stowed away very easily. To power
the lift we will be using 2 vex v5 motors on each side of the lift to ensure the lift has enough power and angular
torque to lift heavy objects. To ensure the lift will have enough angular torque we will be gearing the lift with a
compound gear ratio, we have decided to compound gear ratio the lift with a 15:1 gear ratio. A compound gear
ratio is a gear system that powers a mechanism using multiple differently sized gears which are geared together
to allow the mechanism to have either more torque or more speed (we will be gearing it for more torque). For
example, we have an 84-tooth gear spin a 12-tooth gear, allowing the 12-tooth gear to spin seven times for each
STEM Proposal - Home Aid Robot for The
Physically Impaired
By Farees Siddiqui, Arturo LeMonaco & Matt Daigle
full rotation the 84-tooth gear completes (84:12 = 7:1), and then we have another 7:1 ratio compound from the
12-tooth gear giving us a total ratio of 1:49. Compound gear ratios are also commonly found in gearing for
bicycles (especially mountain bikes) as well as cars and other motorized vehicles.

While our goals may appear highly ambitious, we have done similar, less challenging programming and building
using similar parts. With the aid of what we’ve learned in our STEM courses, we will be able to efficiently design
and present this robot.

Materials and Costs


All can be purchased online through https://vexrobotics.com

Materials Price

V5 Robot Brain $324.99

V5 Smart Motor x12 $45.99

Optical Shaft Encoder (2- $25.99


pack)

4" Wheel (4-pack) $25.99

1x2x1x35 Steel C-Channel $11.99


(2-pack) x12

Rubber Bands $14.99

Linear Motion Kit $32.99

Total: $582 (NOTE: This is a rounded price before taxes)

All parts were loaned to us from our robotics team to build the prototype and advance research into our current
VEX robotics season game, “Turning Point”, where you score points by launching balls at rotating flags to score
points and stacking caps on poles. This project will enhance our understanding for how to build our robot for the
actual robotics game. NOTE: This design shall be far too powerful and big for us to legally use in a VEX robotics
competition, so the robot will not be used for any means other than this project. While we cannot use this design
for competitions due to its overpowered capabilities, it has given us an even deeper understanding of how to
design a robot that performs much more efficiently during competitions.

Mentor
STEM Proposal - Home Aid Robot for The
Physically Impaired
By Farees Siddiqui, Arturo LeMonaco & Matt Daigle

Mr. Vincent Lu
Present - Computer Science and Engineering
teacher at Leaside High School

Contact: vincent.lu@tdsb.on.ca

Background Research & Significance


Purpose
Autonomous Robots are slowly making their way into our homes -- whether it be through Smart Home Devices
such as a Google Home, a Roomba that vacuums your floors for you, or a talking toilet are becoming increasingly
popular in modern households. However there are not many autonomous robots designed to help the physically
impaired move heavy objects around there residence. Although there are things like scissor lifts that you can rent
from companies these are usually very expensive and cost on average $250/day and are not “user friendly”, in
addition people with physical disabilities would not be able to use these at all. Another benefit of our robot over
commercial scissor lifts is that they are not autonomous, you have to give the machine some sort of input, but
with our robot you will be able to attach a piece of reflective tape to yourself or your wheelchair and have the
robot follow you while keeping a safe distance from you. Another thing this robot has that is special is that it will
have a platform on top of the lift with a conveyor belt to pick up things like boxes by itself. With our design the
consumer has full control of the robot and none of the data is sent back to the manufacturer. So no data is stolen,
another feature this robot will have is that is also a surveillance system, so when you “arm” the robot it conveys
a live feed of whatever it sees to your phone
http://www.lealrental.com/product/scissor-lift-rough-terrain-8841/?

Scientific Principles
Programming - Farees
While the line tracking system will be easily implemented with less than one hundred lines of code, it may take
several hundred lines to create the motion tracking. The vision sensor which is a camera will provide the robot
with ample information for it to understand the location of the reflective tape using trigonometric formulas such
as the sine and cosine laws which will calculate the distance of the dynamic object in order for the robot to aim
and drive to the reflective tape. In order to calculate how far the robot has moved and how much further it needs
to go it will use the optical shaft encoders mounted on unpowered wheels paired with the PID algorithm (explained
on page 2)
STEM Proposal - Home Aid Robot for The
Physically Impaired
By Farees Siddiqui, Arturo LeMonaco & Matt Daigle

Gearing - Matt
The gearing of the Lift will be done by Matt, Arturo, and Farees. The scissor lift depends on the gear ratio having
no friction so the lift motors do not stall. Additionally, the scissor lift will need a compound gear system to lift
heavy objects, which comprises of 2 motors on each side of the lift. Without the proper gearing, the Lift will not
be able to go higher than approximately 1.5 feet. Gear ratio calculations will be required in order to determine the
torque, the rotations per minute, as well as the speed of the output gear.
http://www.sci.brooklyn.cuny.edu/~kammet/gear_notes.pdf

Links to STEM
Physics
- The Scissoris a very common mechanism which has velocity control (V = d/t) to calculate the speed each
side needs to go up (This will also have PID) so the lift goes up straight and not on an angle
- For motion tracking, a basic understanding of trigonometry is required to track a dynamic object in the
middle of three ultrasonic sensors: one for depth, another one for each side of the dynamic object
- To calculate the displacement of the base we need to use a shaft encoder by which can determine how far
the robot has/will travel

Computer Science/Engineering
- Understanding of autonomous and manual control coding is required to operate the robot with or without
the presence of the consumer/driver
- Sensor coding to detect dynamic objects and line tracking
- Gear ratios which allow efficiency are commonly used in mechanical objects such as cars, bicycles, and
other motorized vehicles

The Plan

Task Group Member Deadline


Finish Base Farees, Arturo, Matt March 16th, 2019

Finish Lift Farees, Arturo, Matt March 20th, 2019


STEM Proposal - Home Aid Robot for The
Physically Impaired
By Farees Siddiqui, Arturo LeMonaco & Matt Daigle
Finish coding Lift PID + Motion Tracking Farees March 21st 2019

Maintenance Atruto March 22nd, 2019

Wiring complete Matt March 23rd, 2019

Testing and debugging Farees, Matt, Arturo All of april