Design and build a machine that fires Nerf foam balls and hits static and moving targets with great accuracy and speed.
Four engineers joined forces to accept the challenge.
Justin Farrell (firing), Melvin Rayappa (vision, coding), Jason Atwood (system integration), and Rachel Jackson (loading, aiming)
Figure 1. Depiction of overall mechatronic system with key components highlighted.
Continue reading “CMU Mechatronics Project: Multi-shot Cannon”
I have a lot of USB devices which I’m continually plugging/unplugging from my Windows 7 machine. I wanted some custom icons to appear on the desktop when specific devices are plugged in. I hacked together a solution from several other people’s solutions around the web to put together a (hopefully) complete how-to:
Continue reading “Custom Auto-mount Desktop Icons in Windows 7”
For the last ten months, I’ve been contracting as an electromechanical engineer at a research chemistry firm in Atlanta. They specialize in commercializing several patented processes and they have hired me to automate the processes for several applications. I have used this opportunity to refine and expand my electronics and process controls skill sets. They work with several Fortune 500 companies producing quick market solutions. In the interest of all of this privacy I am bound to a pretty strict confidentiality agreement. Unfortunately I can’t talk about details, however, I am working on some really cool projects so I’ll stick to the how’s and leave out the what-for’s.
I had this really long post in the works and was completing it piece-meal as I had time. Sad to say though, I’ve been so busy doing work that I haven’t had time to write about work. So in the interest of brevity and to start a format where I can easily add new posts as I finish projects, I’m going to limit my writing and let some pictures do most of the talking.
I am spending a lot of time working with LabView and I have become quite efficient at writing programs and designing process control systems. One of our processes requires monitoring and controlling seven gas flows, monitoring the pressure in two liquid lines, monitoring the temperature in ten locations, and moving a two axis robot to various positions and repeating several paths. The program can also export all of this data to an Excel file of the user’s choosing.
The motion hardware at ____ is antiquated ValueMotion driver and nuDrive amplifier hardware, which took me a bit of time to setup and get working properly. I’ve implemented both a mechanical and software emergency stop. The thermocouple and pressure transducer monitoring is accomplished with National Instrument’s FieldPoint modules, which while also legacy technology, are quite ubiquitous at ____.
I wrote a program that incorporated all of these features. I’ve removed any confidential information but here is a overview of the program and the necessary files.. I am in the process of upgrading all of ____’s Labview to LV2009 from the much older 7.1 (and even 5.0 on some machines). So this program is written in 7.1.
|LabVIEW 7.1 (files zipped)
Oh! I’m so excited I can’t wait! Christmas presents are all wrapped and ready to go out. Will Santa be stopping by your house this week? You’ll just have to wait and see. For now, a peak at his workshop:
Continue reading “Merry Haxor Xmas”
Every time I go home for Thanksgiving, I discover some new artifact from my childhood. This time, it was a video that my friend, brother, and I made sometime when we were probably 11 or 12. I remember our family had a big bulky personal camcorder that had a stop-motion feature. It looked something like this:
Basically, you pushed a button and the camera took a short clip. We then moved the figures and pushed the button again. As with most things we did as kids, this was completely improvised. We also started experimenting by manually lengthening the clips and this allowed us to use a G.I. Joe toy to add sound effects. Its no Robot Chicken but we probably had fun making it.