2011 - Exploring...

Maze Solver Robots

I wanted to try building a robot to solve a maze. There were not enough maze pieces for DrGraeme's maze 12 that I wanted to build, so I made some more maze pieces.



My mentor has weird tastes in music...


and assembled maze 12 from DrGraeme's web site.

组装的 DrGraeme 的迷宫12图。

Maze 12 DrGraeme.net for Lego NXT MindStorm robots

When touch and ultrasonic sensors were added to my LEGO NXT ClareBot, I could test my very first maze solving Robot.

当触摸和超声波传感器被添加到 ClareBot,我有机会测试用我的机器人走迷宫。

Lego MindStorms NXT Maze runner

It had problems turning tight corners and following walls smoothly, but it DID solve the maze!


However the gear wheels on the touch sensor caught in cracks in the maze wall, so I tried adding a flexible ( dFlex ) sensor from Dexter Industries to my ClareBot. Using NXT-G:

然而, 装在 齿轮 上的 触摸传感器 经常卡在 迷宫 墙缝 ,所以我尝试了一个灵活的(dFlex)传感器 ,它 由德克斯特工 公司制造 使用NXT- G:

ClareBot using a Dexter Industries DFlex flex sensor

Using the dFlex sensor with RobotC to go around the maze:


Doing a Wheelie...

ClareBot Lego NXT MindStorms does a wheelie

After our dFlex sensor is added, big-wheeled ClareBot can do a "wheelie".


Balancing on two wheels...

We wondered if we could make a robot that balanced using our dFlex sensor.

Yaya Lu Flex Balance Robot First Attempt Lego NXT MindStorms

The videos show the result - not bad for a quick first attempt - but still a way to go. John Cole, in his Dexter Industries blog dated April 25th 2011, says that this is the first time that this has been done; to read his comment click here.

ClareBot using Light Sensors around a Maze

Lego MindStorms NXT Maze 2a ClareBot DrGraeme.net

My mentor built Maze 2a from DrGraeme's web site (but didn't quite get it right).

ClareBot ran this maze in an anti-clockwise direction using light sensors.

and in a clockwise direction.



Solving a Line Maze

A  new line maze needed testing.


Line Maze for Lego MindStorms NXT robots

Using the sample line follow program supplied with RobotC, and the left LEGO light sensor attached to my LEGO NXT robot ClareBot to follow the left edge of the lines:

使用RobotC 语言 提供的 样板走线 程序,左 面的 乐高光传感器贴在我的 基于 NXT机器人ClareBot 左面, 跟随 黑线 的左边缘 :

Changing the sample line follow RobotC program to use the right LEGO light sensor to follow the right edge of the maze lines:


With three LEGO light sensors, ClareBot finished the maze in half the time.

Lego MindStorms NXT Line Maze solver ClareBot www.yayalu.net Lego MindStorms NXT Line Maze solver ClareBot www.yayalu.net

Melbourne University RoboGals Competition - Prototype Wheelchair Control System.

I entered a video of my prototype complete quadriplegic wheelchair control system for Melbourne University School of Engineering's "RoboGals Science Challenge for girls". The competition is meant to encourage girls and their parents or mentors to submit a Science or Engineering video report of their Science experiment or Engineering development. The competition was divided into several age groups and topics; you can see the competition rules here. Entries closed on Friday 28th October 2011. There were 20 entries, mine was number 12. We had to answer some questions about our projects; my answers are here.  I had to learn a lot of new things about RobotC, sensors and video editing to enable me to finish my entry. You can see my video below.


First Prize in Senior Category.

I was lucky that I was chosen as one of the finalists in the Senior category, and was flown to Melbourne for the awards ceremony. I was even luckier to be awarded first prize in the Senior Category. You can see what happened to me that weekend by clicking here.

Dr. Damien Kee was kind enough to feature my video on the NXT Step blog (October 23) here. It was also featured on Dexter Industries web site blog here, and in Matters Technology Robotics web page here. I was lucky - more than 1,200 people saw my video on YouTube in the first fortnight.

The way my system worked was that it used movements of the complete quadriplegic's eyebrows, nose and ears to control a wheelchair. I built the wheelchair using pieces from a LEGO NXT education MindStorms set, together with some extra non-LEGO sensors that are mentioned in the videos. I used RobotC to program the two NXT computer bricks. One NXT computer brick was used in the "headset", measuring the movements of the quadriplegic's face, interpreting these movements as wheelchair movement commands, and broadcasting these commands to the NXT computer brick attached to the quadriplegic's wheelchair. Two Dexter Industries' NXTBees were used for the radio transmission between the NXT bricks.

Gingerbread house

I also like cooking. This is my very first Tasmanian (see the flag) gingerbread house.

Yaya Lu gingerbread house Lego

I've added a LEGO motorbike to help my LEGO Gretel escape from the wicked witch. Maybe next time I can bake a gingerbread garage for one of my robots...

More Awards...

During the year I achieved a 99th percentile in a National Mathematics test, and was awarded an Ogilvie medallion for Achievement in Mathematics. Instead of doing year 10 maths, the School has arranged for me to do year 11 mathematics at College next year. I was lucky enough to get the Grade 9 PH Mitchell Memorial Prize for Outstanding Academic Achievement and Merit; Grandma was pleased. I was also appointed a prefect, next year will be a busy year.

YayaLu.net - Some of my robots - 2011