2023 Fall Mid Term Recap
Every year, Wildstang 111 students are responsible for creating or continuing a thesis project. In these projects, small groups of students create and execute a plan, aimed at helping the team and community. Thesis projects give students an opportunity to make a difference and leave a lasting impact on the program. This year we have six different groups, hard at work to improve our program in ways important to them.
The Wheel Testing thesis group is aiming to improve the wheels our program uses. They are currently testing different 3D printed wheels and comparing them to last year’s treaded wheels. The goal is to create an effective, long lasting wheel with great grip on the carpet. Along with maximizing wheel efficiency, this thesis group is testing various other methods of going faster, such as increasing motor current limits and motor cooling.
The Demobot thesis group is currently creating a robot specifically designed for demonstrations. This will be a simpler, safer version of an FRC robot that younger kids can better understand. This Demobot will showcase what FRC is all about and require minimal repairs throughout coming years. The robot will be passed down through the program as currently involved students graduate.
The Electrical Bible thesis group’s main focus is to share information on all aspects of the electrical subteam in FRC. They hope to eventually post a collection of diagrams, instructions on how to use electrical components and what they do, and ways to troubleshoot electrical issues to a site called Chief Delphi. This allows other teams to see what we do, and give feedback. This thesis group is also working on intricate software, recycling bad batteries, keeping the playing field more organized, and reaching out to companies about sponsorships.
The Wildstang Robotics Program History thesis group is working on making a Wildstang history page that will be displayed on the official website. This page will show tidbits from each year, dating back all the way to 1996 (possibly even 1992). Not only will it be fun and helpful to have an extensive record of the teams’ history, but it will also come in handy next year for the program’s 30th anniversary.
The Challenge Evaluation thesis group revolves around reflecting on games from previous years and recognizing which robots succeeded. They will focus on educating the team of past engineering challenges and the strategies employed by winning teams. creating prototypes to model solutions. This is to make up for the learning challenges brought by Covid and virtual learning.
The Vision Processing Thesis group is working to improve the robot’s vision system. They are comparing the use of Orange Pi to our current system. Orange Pi uses a compact computer with a camera and motherboard to maximize overall vision performance. They aim to simplify training for new software members and boost competition reliability by integrating April tags, a type of robot QR code. They are also exploring the use of Google Coral, a USB with AI processor, to improve game piece recognition.
A great deal of the Wildstang team is creating an inclusive and fun environment for all members. One way this is achieved is what we call the WS Olympics. Students are put into randomized groups, and at the beginning of every class, meet as a team to compete against other groups. By doing this, the students feel compelled to get to know each other and are more at ease about making new friends.