Welcome to UBRobotics’ second newsletter, this time it’s a Christmas special. First of all, the Club would like to wish all our readers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! December marks the end of term so there has been a lot of activity trying to finalise the robot designs ready to start manufacture early next term.
UBRobotics were invited by Dr Saadat to give a technical presentation as part of his manufacturing systems module. Our speakers introduced the Club and what we do, including a section on the competitions we enter, then continued to discuss the design of robotic systems, control systems, 3D printing in robotics, and path finding algorithms. 100 students were present along with Mr Paul Stone, General Manager of Stäubli UK. The lecture was very well received and it was nice to contribute to the discussion of robotics applications.
Recently the Club has had a small 3D printer generously donated to us, enabling us to print our custom parts and reduce manufacturing and prototyping time. We have already learned a lot about how it operates, and have printed out a wide selection of items to test its capabilities. The image shown on the right is a harmonic drive, featuring two planetary gears and a flexi spline, used to deliver an incredible 50:1 gear ratio with minimal backlash. This was all printed as one piece! We plan to use this amazing technology to print the majority of our plastic parts, and we are incredibly grateful to Professor Pham who gifted us the printer.
December also saw the Lego League return to the University; a challenge that sees teams of school children create robots made of Lego to complete a series of complex challenges, with this year’s theme being ‘Animal Antics’. It was great to see engineers of the future with so much enthusiasm and we were pleased to be able to lend a hand in making the event was a huge success.