Madelyn Brown Worklog

  • Post author:
  • Post last modified:February 3, 2024
  • Reading time:8 mins read
  • Post category:Work Logs

Work Weeks of September 17th & 24th:

Completed Work:
We’ve met with our sponsor and have a clearer idea as to what we’re going to achieve. We’re working with both the building and our sponsor to see if we can get a test robot down here to use for our project- it would be extremely helpful and would forward communications fairly quickly.
We’ve also acquired our raspberry pi, from which we’ll be programming our HMI screen.

Goals for next week:
We have another sponsor meeting- iron out details on our robot.
Come up with a plan for getting our mid semester goals done- the deadline is fast approaching.
Look into ordering a physical screen for our HMI.

Anticipated Roadblocks:
Communicating directly with the robot. We are unsure how it sends + receives signals, especially when it comes to using an external computer.
Maneuvering actual screen design and making it look professional.

Work Weeks of October 1st & 8th:

Completed Work:
Experimented with sending output signals from the raspberry pi. We were able to have buttons on our HMI screen send signals out to an external fan we used, proving the concept of using HMI screen buttons to control IO fairly easily. We also ironed out some robot details, and will hopefully get it and the touch screen for our pi delivered soon. We’ve been experimenting as well on layout designs for the HMI, polishing our test screen a bit.

Goals for next week:
Gather feedback from the CDR and begin looking into different IO devices we can control. Add more to the HMI screen and continue experimenting with what we have available.

Anticipated Roadblocks:
The pi has a limited number of IO slots, so we might have to interface with the robot controller rather than the robot itself if we’d like to do a lot of commands. We also are experimenting with direct hardwiring, and industry usually does things over ethernet, which we’ve yet to test.

Work Weeks of October 15th & 22nd:

Completed Work:
We successfully used a button on our HMI screen to control an LED light, and created an in-depth IO screen that we will use to show the status of different IO pins. We’ve also received our touchscreen which we’ll use for demo purposes, and it works exactly as we anticipated it to. Our sponsor also sent us the robot which we’ll be communicating with, and we’ve set it up so we’re ready to talk with it.

Goals for next week:
We’re in the process of doing research with how to communicate over Ethernet to the robot. We’re currently unsure of the path we’d like to take, so we need to get that solidified and tested as soon as possible.

Anticipated Roadblocks:
Ethernet communication with the Pi is tricky. It’s going to take a lot of trial and error to send signals to our robot- which isn’t in prime condition. It has an issue with the first axis- which is fine, and means we can’t use it- but it may lead to future complications.

Work Week of October 29th:

Completed Work: We continued our research on providing both a case for the Pi and our screen, as well as communicating through Ethernet. Below are some links we found on Ethernet communication.

EtherNet/IP Anybus Adapter:

Technical Reference Manual:

Goals for next week: Genuine testing with the robot, putting our research to work and attempting to send signals back and forth.

Anticipated Roadblocks: Same as previous- also finding time where all of us are available is tricky. It’s hard to combine research when we’re all in separate places. We also need to grab several ethernet cables so we can all communicate at once.

2024 Semester Worklog

Work Week of January 22nd:

Completed Work: Reached out to ABB to get a price on our PC interface, so we can connect our robot to Ethernet so we can communicate.

Goals for next week:
– Order a case for the screen and computer
– Follow up with ABB for the PC interface part
– Take a look at the J1 encoder, figure out why it isn’t working properly [Meet with Shane]
– Begin sketching what the final HMI should look like(?) Customizable?
– Make an exhaustive list containing everything we want incorporated into the screen

Anticipated Roadblocks: ABB may take a while to respond back to us. In the interim, we can create and begin modifying our HMI screen to look the way we’d like.

Sketch for our system is not very useful, as it’s just the screen, robot, and robot controller. We need to continue to discuss how we want our HMI laid out, and sketches will be uploaded as we do so.

Work Week of January 28nd:

Completed Work: Met about our encoder issues, attempting to solve. Got a response from the PC interface, continuing the email chain to get that set up.

Goals for next week:
– Make an exhaustive list containing everything we want incorporated into the screen
– Begin designing a possible interface
– Work on presentation to pitch our design
– Continue to communicate with Flex Auto and ABB

Anticipated Roadblocks: Email chain is taking a long time to complete.