ECE597 Project Sumo Robot

Revision as of 12:41, 10 May 2010 by Tomwm (talk | contribs) (Updated status)
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The goal of this project is to create a BeagleBoard-powered robot capable of competing in an autonomous sumo competition in the 3.0 kg weight class (an example). This would have minor hardware and electronics elements, but would focus on communication with sensors using the BeagleBoard and the Linux kernel. At minimum, this involves sensors to detect the edge of the ring and the opposing robot.

Sumo Competition Rules

The goal of a sumo competition is to force an opposing robot out of a circular ring without being either being pushed out or running out of the ring accidentally. In the 3kg weight class, the two opposing robots begin approximately 20 cm from each other in the middle of a 154 cm diameter black dohyo (raised cylinder) with white lines painted along its edge to designate the boundary. The robots may not use any methods other than simple motive force to force their opponent out of the ring and must operate completely autonomously. The robot that forces its opponent off of the dohyo wins the match.

Hardware Details


  • IR rangefinders -- Sharp GP2D12
    • Analog voltage output fed to ADC. - AD7991
    • Voltage output varies non-linearly with distance. See datasheet link above for details.
  • Sonic rangefinders (need a way to power-cycle these [1]) -- SRF08
    • Primary sensing: Distance in in cm/inches/μs up to 6 meters.
    • Secondary sensing: Light Amount [Not used in our application]
    • 5V required. 3mA standby, 11mA during ranging.
    • Communication via I2C bus.
  • Header for 3-axis accelerometer module - ADXL345
    • Auto-ranging from +-2/4/8/16 g in z,y,z
    • Vs = 2.0-3.3V and Vi/o 1.7V-Vs
    • Communication via I2C bus
  • Edge sensors (used to detect the white lines at the edge of the ring)
  • USB camera (eventually; low priority)

Other I/O

  • Motor control
    • Use four H-bridge motor drivers (one for each motor) - L298
    • Two PWM pins used for speed control
    • Two GPIO for direction selection
  • Input button to start 5-second match countdown
  • LEDs
    • "Ready" LED (blinks when counting down to match start)


  • Power requirements
    • Motors take 7.2 V, 2A (4A at stall)
    • BeagleBoard Requires 5V, 350mA
  • Power supply
    • 6AA battery holders (×2)
    • 1A Low Dropout 5 volt regulator - LM2940
    • Voltage divider into ADC (same AD7991 as IR sensors) for low-voltage shutdown


  • Build physical robot [On track]
    • Drivetrain [Mostly complete]
      • Water-cut plates [Done]
      • Cut corner fasteners [Done]
      • Assemble [Done]
    • Electronics box (to be done after electronics have been completed) [Not started]
  • Construct electronics [In Progress]
    • Acquire AA NiMH batteries (×12) [Done]
    • Acquire 6AA battery holders (×2) [Done]
    • Acquire Sensors [Done]
      • SRF08 sonic rangefinders (×2) [Done]
      • GP2D12 IR rangefinders (×2) [Done]
      • ADXL345 3-axis accelerometer [Done]
      • Edge sensors [Done]
    • Manufacture PCB [Not started]
      • Create PCB Schematic [Done]
      • Layout PCB [In progress]
      • Mill board [Not started]
      • Acquire Misc board components [In progress]
        • L298 H-bridges (×4) [Done]
        • Level shifter
        • ADC [Not started]
      • Place Components [Not started]
      • Test Board [Not started]
  • Interface Beagle with external components
    • I2C (sonic rangefinders, accelerometer) [Done]
    • PWM (motor control) [Done]
    • ADC (IR rangefinders, edge sensors) [Done]
    • GPIO (LED, buttons, motor control) [Done]
  • Write control software [Not started]
    • Low-level motor control [In progress]
    • Detect and prevent exit from arena [Not started]
    • Detect and ram competitor [Not started]
    • Recover from a competitor's attack [Not started]
  • Build or print sumo ring [Not started]

Team Members