Prototyping: Stage One

After a well-deserved Thanksgiving break, our team resumed working full force in order to complete the initial phase of SpORT prototyping. Over the last week, our mechanical team completed the first full wooden frame of the machine. It is currently without wheels and thus stationary, with the next step being addition of the panning and rotation functions. The team found that the prototype, built out of MDF, is too weak to support the momentum of the 15-lb wheel spinning at the 1000 RPM they were planning for it to. As such, the team is working to make a new prototype that is adjustable to varying wheel and ball sizes, essentially leaving room for any slight calculation error.

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The software team laid out three user interface prototypes for the application on Android Studio; this is the actual part of the machine that special education students will be able to interact with in order to control SpORT. They also began to root the Fire 7 tablet, which will be used to run the application, and began the process of integrating the moving parts of the machine with the Raspberry Pi 3. 

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Finally, the electrical team has been working side-by-side with mechanical to build the prototype and align all electrical parts in the machine. A full draft schematic of the motor control within SpORT has been created and reviewed by all technical team leads in order to align all prototyping with the electrical components of the machine. 

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Although there is much work already completed in the initial prototyping phase, every meeting is jam-packed with calculations, code and construction to make the prototype work as smoothly as possible. Despite the holidays, the team has dived head-first into the design and building process for SpORT, working tirelessly every week to achieve SpORT’s first fully-functional integrated prototype.