Monday, our 3D prints failed again because of a power outage over the weekend. We recalculated our estimates of how much lift the balloons will generate and found that it might be appropriate to attach multiple balloons together.
During lunch, I went to the Personalizing The Personal Statement lunch club, which was really helpful. I am not sure what I am going to write about yet for the personal statement, but I hadn’t considered reading public successful personal statements from others. After lunch, I configured the Bluetooth chip to send twenty byte packets in a buffer, and connected it to the gyroscope. Currently, the system is capable of sending the data from the gyroscope to the online Bluetooth controller, although the gyroscopes measurements will need to be tuned to adjust for the new voltage.
Tuesday, for the first time, our CAD pieces all printed successfully. We didn’t realize that the motors that spin counterclockwise are threaded differently from the clockwise motors, so we had to heat and re-thread the motors. After we fixed the motors, we put together some of the CAD prices, and reinflated the balloon. After lunch, I continued to work on the Bluetooth system, which now works with the gyroscope.
Wednesday, we started assembling our cad pieces, and fixed some of the motors with higher voltage speed chips. It took a while to connect all the balloon wrappers to the propellers, but everything ended up working out well. Currently, we have three of our motors working, 2 counterclockwise and 1 clockwise. Also, our battery arrived. Although we had an old battery from the drone, we decided to get a different one with more power. Our new battery is only slightly heavier than our old one, but it has 12V instead of 7, and 9000mAh instead of 1800. We will have to solder on our own port to connect to the Arduino because it currently has a charging port that limits the amp output. During lunch, I went to the Getting the Reference Letters That Get You Results club. The club talked about how you can help your references by giving them notes on stories and characteristics they could talk about. After lunch, I adjusted the readings from the gyroscope to be accurate with the higher voltage. We also noticed that the parts case was broken, probably because of wear and tear since it was supporting the full weight of the drone components. We plan to create a crumple zone to protect the drone from falling too hard, one of the ideas I had early on in the brainstorming process. We are taking this opportunity to make the case more sturdy in the center, which supports the propellers, and much lighter on the front and back, which only has to contain and support the battery, Arduino, and GPS.
Thursday, we got higher quality brushless motors, which could create more thrust and were more energy efficient. We tested out the new motors, and they worked smoothly. I soldered a barrel Jack port onto the inside of our battery, which would allow us to draw more amps from the battery when using it, although we will still have to use the original connector to charge it. We also created a crumple zone out of paper, which can cushion any calls the drone could have. We’re not sure if we will use the crumple zone because even though it doesn’t take up much weight, it would create a significant amount of air resistance. After lunch, we tested all the electronic components. The motors, Bluetooth, and gyroscope all work, but it remains to be seen if we can add a servo for the rudder or GPS. Then, an acting coach came in to help us with our presentations. Some of the advice about communicating the gist of your project first before going into details or reasoning was really helpful.