Blog Posts

Final Design Review

Team Power House is proud to announce the completion of our autonomous robot rocking station project! On Tuesday, we presented our Final Design Review presentation where we were able to explain our solution to FPL, IPPD staff and students, and the public! We presented in person while also allowing for people to join via Zoom or Webex.

Florida Power & Light was thrilled to see our accomplishments, and we would like to thank them for being so helpful and encouraging along the way! We would also like to thank Dr. Turner, our coach, for his expertise and support, and the IPPD program for this experience.

We hope to see a version of our design out in the field one day!

Final Poster

Team Power House is very excited to share our final poster. This will be presented during the Final Design Review along with video and live demos. This poster summarizes our project in a nutshell.

Team Power House Final Video!

Check out our final video at the link below!

Now Starring . . . THOR!

From the green (uhhh blue?) screen to the theaters of the Reitz Union, our THOR is going to be a star! This week, Hadrien and Katie have been working hard in the IPPD studio capturing clips of our project while Ali and TJ are adding in their ~movie magic~ to make it all come together. As part of the Final Design Review package, we have to create a 1-3 minute video showcasing all of our hard work this semester. Our plan is to show how THOR will be used out in the field when there is a outage because of a storm. We are learning that it is challenging to showcase such a large project in a cohesive way, while keeping things exciting. We got some great feedback from other IPPD teams during last week’s class and we are looking forward to showing off the final cut!

P.S. If you’re wondering what Alex and Logan are up to.. don’t worry we didn’t let them off easy. They are creating a killer poster to showcase at the final FDR event!

Redirecting our Energy

Since most of our physical prototype is completed and working, we’ve been spending a lot of time this week working on all of our other deliverables. In addition to the prototype, we need to turn in a multi-volume final design report, a two-minute video, and a poster. We decided that instead of going to the lab and working on the finishing touches of the prototype, we would focus our energy on getting those deliverables done as early as possible. 

Everyone was assigned a specific section of the report to write and have been working on creating content for those sections. Catherine, Logan, and Alex have been working on potential designs for the poster. At class this week, we got some great feedback about the poster design and what needs to be refined in the next revision. Hadrien, Alexandria, and TJ have been working on writing, filming, and editing the video. After being inspired by other team’s videos from past projects and watching other FPL promotion videos and commercials, we are now working on a script that tells the story of how this project benefits the company.  

Next steps are to finish drafts of all these deliverables and get them reviewed before submitting. Then we will put finishing touches on our prototype such as paint and decals to make it pop during FDR. We’re almost at the finish line! 

Prototype Inspection Day

On Tuesday, March 23, 2021, Team Power House had the opportunity to show off and present our current prototype. There were some technical difficulties at first with the presentation setup but after they were fixed, the presentations went very well. We were able to get some great feedback from the judges that we will apply going forward towards the FDR. The team structured the presentation in a way to allow for each subsystem to be highlighted with their progress made. At the end of the presentation, premade videos of the current docking and dispatch sequences were shown in their beta versions. There is about a month left to polish and finish testing the prototype while working on all of the documentation for the FDR. We are excited about our progress and will continue working hard to deliver the best product we can!

Practice Makes Perfect

The team has begun preparing for our second prototype inspection day which included a peer review presentation! Our first in-person presentation went well, and we received valuable feedback for the actual prototype inspection day and for presentations in the future. We are still navigating how to present in-person to an online audience. We have been advised that it may be beneficial to have a wide view camera so that the whole team can be seen at once. We will employ this, and we will also use a phone camera to highlight specific items on the prototype.

Practicing Presenting In-Person

Another useful piece of feedback received was advice to show what we have now versus what we started with in terms of our prototype. This aspect of a presentation will allow viewers to see the progress and gain insight into what worked and what did not. We hope these improvements will yield a smooth presentation and useful feedback from the faculty.

Putting The Pieces Together

The team is working hard to build a functioning prototype for our prototype day presentations. We have been focusing on integrating all of our subsystems together. In order to have a complete system, our subsystems need to be able to communicate with each other. While this has been challenging, we are making progress. So far we are able to send commands from one central computer to the robot, to the raspberry pi computer and finally to our arduinos to kick off processes to open the door, and start the charging process. We are still working on making this possible remotely. 

All Hands On Deck

Team PowerHouse is in full swing with beginning system integration within all subteams! For the first time, the team had all six members working together in the lab. The Charging team made a huge breakthrough with successful tests of their charging mechanism interfacing with the robot’s charging port. Meanwhile, the Robot Control team also made great progress with manipulating the robot’s docking and dispatch sequences in addition to gaining autonomous control of the door on the structure. Finally, the Structure team submitted parts for 3D printing that will prove to be a pivotal step towards correctly aligning the robot within the structure with testing expected to commence next week. With Prototype Inspection Day just a few weeks away, the team plans to shift focus towards system integration and testing to ensure every component comes together smoothly.

QRB 2 Updates

We’ve made it to our second major milestone of the semester – Qualitative Review Board #2. The team presented to a group of coaches a brief presentation on our testing plan and updates from the semester.  

The main criticism was that we jumped straight into the project and didn’t talk much about the overall starting goals of the project. This information would’ve helped paint a better picture of our progress in meeting those goals throughout the semester so far. Additionally, we got good advice about how we need to think about our deliverables in the context of how we’ll talk about it once we graduate. As a whole, we did well and got good advice about how to proceed.