Hoverbear Log

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Week of April 21st

April 26th

April 25th

11:30am - 5:30pm: Things that need to get done:

Try out the new fan Michael Brings from the Microcenter

Remember, this is all about thrust now; the thing hovers, just doesn’t move.

If the fan isn’t able to provide enough thrust, try it with the VARDAR FURIOUS fan

If it doesn’t work with the vardar furious, take note of whether it worked better with or without the vardar, and use that design.

Take off as much weight as possible. This means shorter wires, shedding foam with the razor, widening the cockpit, even scraping plastic off the delta fan (ONLY THE SIDES, not the actual blades)

Make this presentable. Use as little tape as possible. Tape might be necessary, however, JUST for adjusting the skirt tubes for leveling.

If it can’t move, show that IN THE CASE it were able to move(no battery to weigh it down, for instance) it would be smart enough to avoid obstacles, follow line, etc,

I fixed the rudder problem, the nuts shouldn’t loosen anymore. If they do, take the drill and SLIGHTLY widen the hole the screw is going through that is making the problem. 11:30am - 12:00pm: Michael finally actually logged the stuff that he'd done over the past week, as well as fixing some minor formatting things on the wiki.

April 24th

10:00pm - 11:30pm: James and Michael worked on fixing the code so the rudders wouldn't spaz out when the ultrasonic distance sensors are activated.

10:00pm - 11:30pm: Lucas made a new skirt tube and updated the pages diagram with new dimensions. He'll put this on the main page tomorrow. Something is wrong with the hovercraft again; It does not seem to be able to hover at all. There is likely a skirt problem. The best course of action is just to replace the skirt with new skirt tubes tomorrow.

3:15pm - 7:00pm: Lucas worked with James from 3:00pm to 5:00 on the poster, which will be fully printed tomorrow. Lucas went to Jim to ask for some feedback on the presentation, and gave the feedback to James, who finished up the final touches of the poster. Meanwhile, Lucas fixed up some minor problems with the Hoverbear and demonstrated its capabilities to James. Same yesterday, the hovercraft is able to hover and is propelled, albeit uncontrollably, by the propelling fan. Once the hovercraft's capabilities were properly demonstrated, Lucas created a platform above the cockpit of Hovercraft for the propelling fan and rudders to be fixed on with nuts and bolts. Michael came in at around 5:45pm when he got out of class and set up the Ultrasonic Distance Sensors onto the Hovercraft. One test was done. With the added weight of the ultrasonic distance sensor and arduino, the hovercraft seemed to be moving somewhat more controllably and was able to intelligently move its rudders in a direction that would move it away from an obstacle. The hovercraft was still able to move and hover with this added weight. Michael also edited the poster to remove all of the white space from the pictures so that they would have transparent backgrounds instead.

11:30am - 1:00pm: Lucas tried to assemble the rudder, but had some trouble. The bolts and nuts he initially chose were not working. It took some time to find better nuts and bolts, but finally was able to properly assemble the rudder.

10:00am - 11:00am: Lucas went to the lab and found some bolts and nuts in the cabinet that would allow the group to properly assemble the rudder.

April 23rd

12:00pm - 1:00pm: Michael wrote the solutions section of the poster and did some miscellaneous edits to the poster.

3:00pm - 5:00pm: Lucas went in and took some weight off of the hoverbear, and readjusted the skirt. The skirt is now positioned closer to the sides/edges of the base, lowering the air chamber but increasing its area. The hoverbear appears to have a much higher weight capacity, demonstrated by its ability to move in a straight line when the propelling fan is turned on. Lucas also discovered some kind of problem in the circuitry; on occasion, there seems to be some kind of power drop in the propelling fan, bringing the hovercraft to a near stop. Lucas will look into this tomorrow.

April 22nd

3:00pm - 5:00pm: Lucas cut up some parts an worked on assembling the rudder.

10:15am - 11:00am: Lucas went to the lab after class to begin assembling the final model of the Hoverbear, according to his diagrams, which should be on the main page by tomorrow night. On Wednesday and Thursday, Lucas will help Michael put the circuitry into the cockpit of the hoverbear.

5:00pm -7:00pm: James worked on the rudder alignment with wiring because couldn't find any bolts.

9:00am - 9:30am: Lucas added to the Design and Solutions of the main page.

11:15pm - 12:00am: Michael met with James to work on the poster, and among other things, worked on the formatting to change the poster from lots of little slides to one bigger slide, as well as working on the wording of some specific sections of the poster.

April 21st

7:30-11pm: James went to lab for a while and worked on making the rudders (in a similar fashion to that of the video) and worked on finishing up poster presentation so it can be printed.

10:50pm - 11:10pm: Lucas began creating a diagram specifying the dimensions of the hovercraft for people to recreate the model in the future.

11:10pm - 11:25pm: Lucas added a Cockpit Area section to Design and Solutions.

Week of April 14th

April 20th

2:00pm - 2:15pm: Lucas retrieved the rudders again from STS and brought them to the lab.

April 19th

4:00pm - 5:00pm: Lucas added a cockpit of sorts to the Hoverbear. This serves as a way of putting the wiring in a secure location while also taking weight off of the Hoverbear.

3:00pm - 4:00pm: Lucas did some research about controlling a PWM fan with an arduino with a separate voltage source. This was followed by a quick 1on1 with Jim.

April 18

7-8:15pm: James worked on poster/presentation in power point.

7:00pm - 11:15pm: Michael took lots of measurements of the various night light dimensions and modeled multiple different boxes for the night light before getting a satisfactory box to send in to STS and upload to Github.

April 16

6-7pm: James went and bought a poster and began work on it.

2:30pm - 3:30pm Lucas went to STS and ordered a 3D print of a rudder system that should allow controllable turning of the hovercraft. Shortly after, he discovered one of the rudders was disproportionate to the other. He returned to STS for the rudders to be remade.

April 15

8:00pm - 8:30pm: Lucas Added the Defining Smart Section of the Hoverbear.

8:30pm - 10:00pm: Lucas took the new fan and put it the hovercraft. It was able to propel, albeit very slowly.

April 14

3:00pm - 5:00pm: James went back to microcenter because we ended up needing a new fan. Might go into lab tonight to try new fan.

8:00pm - 10:30pm: Michael and Lucas worked on the hovercraft with the new fan and did some testing.

Week of April 7th

April 13

9:00pm - 9:30pm: Lucas went onto the Micro Center Website and found some fans that have a high enough CFM to potentially serve as a propeller. I will make another trip to the Micro Center tomorrow to buy one or two, but I may have to go over the budget now.

3:00pm - 8:30pm: Lucas expanded the air chamber once more by adding another foam base layer, slightly increasing the weight capacity of the hovercraft. The hovercraft is able to power the Air Chamber Fan and two other fans and maintain relative hovering. However, the propeller fans are still not nearly powerful enough to propel the hovercraft.

April 12

3:00-9:30pm: James worked with lucas to add a new skirt, went to buy final project poster and started mapping out final prez, went microcenter to obtain information from them and possibly get new fan -- didn't end up getting one because found different strat online, put link in references.

3:00pm - 5:30pm: Lucas added a new skirt to the hoverboard. This new skirt uses four plastic tubes. With the tubes, the skirt has less contact with the floor, reducing friction, and the air chamber is expanded, adding more pressure. The weight capacity has increased significantly.

April 11th

4:00pm - 5:15pm: Lucas went to the lab to try out the new fans. They were not successful in propelling the hovercraft.

6:30pm - 7:15pm: Michael did some minor work on the code, added to Design and Solutions, and did some work on the log.

April 10th

12:00am - 12:30am: Apparently Lucas did something in this time interval on Github, as it clearly shows he added stuff on Github but can't seem to remember what he did. Lucas needs more sleep.

11:00am - 1:00pm: Lucas fixed up hovercraft and attached the two propelling fans. While the 12V battery can power all three while providing sufficient pressure to the air chamber, the two propelling fans are not powerful enough to provide a sufficient propelling force.

5:00pm - 7:00pm: Lucas went over to Microcenter and bought some supplies. He talked with some people there about which fan would best be suited as a propelling fans.

6:30pm - 7:30pm: Michael added some more exhaustive comments to the code on GitHub.

April 8th

12:00pm - 1:00pm: Lucas, Michael, James, and Tony met with Jim to talk about progress. A Design and Solutions page needs to be made. In addition, the hovercraft needs to be able to move. Finally, we need to work on making a poster and presentation for the 19th. These are the main goals for this week.

3:00pm - 4:00pm: Lucas came back and fixed up the hovercraft.

April 7th

3:30pm - 5:00pm: Lucas worked with James and hot-glued a skirt to the base. Using some weights, we determined that a few small tweaks will certainly allow all the required parts to be able to go on the hovercraft without it weighing the hovercraft down completely.

3:45pm - 7:00pm: James worked in the shop on the craft: researched fluid dynamics for fan and skirt, worked with lucas and made new craft (similar to a combination of mark 2 and 3, 2 levels and a skirt.) Put servo motors on the craft but they aren't functioning yet.

9:30pm - 11:30pm: Michael worked on ways to implement the ultrasonic distance sensors into the main body of the drone and retrieved some stuff that had been left there by other group members earlier in the day.

Week of March 31st

April 5th

12:00pm - 1:00pm: James, Lucas and Mike all met to work on hovercraft.

3:30pm - 4:40pm: Lucas made several bases in anticipation of making and experimenting with different designs over the weekend.

3:30pm - 4:45pm: Michael fixed a few bugs in the code, made note of a few possible future problems, and re-soldered some pieces of the nightlight that had been broken over winter break.

April 4th

8:40 - 9:00pm: James researched arduino (working in tandem with hoverboards) examples online.

April 3rd

12:00pm - 1:00pm: James, Lucas and Mike all met to work on hovercraft

9:30pm - 11:30pm: James finished tutorial, would like to have it looked over by Mike to verify.

12:00pm - 1:00pm: Michael worked on modifying the code the work with just two ultrasonic distance sensors and worked on fixing a problem with the way the servo motor does turning. He also tested the new fan and determined that it is completely useless as far as being able to steer the hovercraft.

3:00pm - 5:30pm: Lucas added a skirt to the hovercraft. The hovercraft is now able to get lift. Lucas also worked on the removing weight, finding fans that can be used as driving the hovercraft, and discussed with Michael about how to make a good brake system.

5:00pm - 7:00pm: Michael got the code working fully with two ultrasonic distance sensors and the servo motor. As far as basic obstacle avoidance is concerned, the only thing left to do would be to get a fan attached to the servo motor, and possibly make adjustments to the servo motor code based on the weight of the fan we end up using.

11:00pm - 11:30pm: Michael made a few minor changes to the code, added a full suite of comments to the code, and uploaded it to GitHub.

April 2nd

6:00pm - 7:00pm: Lucas researched Pulse Width Modulation and considered how to use PWM in the hovercraft.

April 1st

12:00pm - 1:00pm: James and Lucas met to work on hovercraft - widening holes

7:30pm - 9:35pm: Lucas made a circuit diagram and calculated how much power is required to make the hovercraft.

7:30pm - 9:45pm: Michael added some new stuff to the code. Having a minor issue where the servo motor doesn't feel like turning for whatever reason, but that's a problem for next time.

Spec sheet for Ultrasonic Distance Sensors

March 31st

10:00-11:00am: James went to mail center for battery and store for poster. Planning on going in to shop for several hours this afternoon.

3:30pm - 4:00pm: Lucas went to the shop and bought some materials to continue making things.

4:00pm - 5:30pm: Lucas did some research to find a way for the Arduino to power the Delta Fan. He concluded that the use of an MJE1102 NPN Transistor will be strong enough to amplify the current to do so. He made these deductions using this Stack Exchange Pageof a person who had a similar problem and this data sheet of the MJE1102 NPN Transistor. After doing research, he found the transistor in the lab and put in the locker.

6:00 - 8:00pm: James went in to shop; created back up original frame; continued working on tutorial -> got info from Michael. James found other fan, did express shipping so it will be here tomorrow, then second battery and push fan will be here.

6:00 - 9:00pm: Michael spoke with James and got him up to date on the progress Michael had made on the servo motor + ultrasonic distance sensor code, then did a bit of tinkering around with the code that is finished currently.

Week of March 24th

March 30th

8:30pm - 9:00pm: Lucas did some research and found an Instructable of two Ultrasonic Distance Sensors controlling a motor. He also went on the Github and added some comments to make the coding more understandable.

March 28th

2:00 - 3:30pm: James continued work on tutorial and did some on presentation.

March 27th

3:15pm - 4:45pm: Lucas widened the holes on the bottom base. A test was not able to be done because the battery broke. The next time a test is able to be done and if the Hovercraft is still unable to make significant lift, we will revert back to a plastic bottom base. He also made some diagrams for the Final Proposal.

March 26th

1:30pm - 4:00pm: Lucas added more holes to the bottom base and remade the middle base. The Hovercraft was still unable to attain any lift. Will try to add more holes later. 2:15 pm - 4:00pm: James worked on tutorial in the work shop

March 25th

10:00 pm - 11:00 pm: James looked at different tutorials to see what and how to create ours. He also researched the "air hockey puck" design and its feasibility.


Lucas will be working on the physical design of the hovercraft, specifically the base. He will also start looking at some of the coding and discussing it with Michael.

Other Notes: I have an exam on Thursday, so I may be less available on that day. Luckily, I do not have a lab this week, so I will try to work on the project on Tuesday.

Michael will be

James will be working on tutorial and final presentation

Monday, March 25th

12:15pm - 1:00pm: Lucas began remaking the bottom base of the hovercraft. Later, he will drill holes into the base.

3:00pm - 3:45pm: Lucas updated the Hoverbear page to reflect new materials, challenges, and logistics.

7:00pm - 10:30pm: Michael did more work coding with the servo motors and ultrasonic distance sensors.

7:30pm - 9:00pm: Lucas added holes to the bottom base of the hovercraft. Tomorrow, he fix the middle base of the hovercraft.

Week of March 17th

March 22nd

3:30pm - 5:30pm: Lucas took the casing off the battery and tried adding more holes to the bottom of the base. The hovercraft still has trouble getting a lot of lift. Will need to talk to the group about changing the way the base is designed to get more lift without making it unstable.

March 21st

11:00am - 11:40am: James fetched the last of the items for the hoverbear

March 21st

12:00am - 12:15am: Michael did some work on the wiki, including uploading the video of the servo motor and ultrasonic distance sensor working in tandem.

March 20th

9:00pm - 10:15pm: James and Michael met to go over servo motor functionality.

March 19th

4:00pm - 4:15pm: Michael added some stuff to the log and cleaned up some of the older stuff.

7:00pm - 10:00pm: Lucas took off some weight of the Hoverbear, added some more holes, and hot-glued the delta fan to the base. The Hoverbear now gets a slight lift, but it is dependent on the surface below it. When Lucas works next, he plans to explore taking off the casing of the battery to decrease the weight of the hovercraft.

8:00pm - 10:30pm: Michael wrote some code for the servo motor, and got it working in conjunction with the ultrasonic distance sensor. The video will be here: (or at least will be once Michael gets around to uploading it).

March 18

6:00pm - 6:30pm: James bought drive fan for the back as well as more servo motors.

6:00pm - 8:30pm: Michael tinkered around with the ultrasonic distance sensor and wrote a code to get it to detect what is in front of it with the help of an online code, and also did a lot of the groundwork for when the additional ultrasonic distance sensors and servo motors will be added in by writing and testing placeholder methods.

7:00pm - 10:15pm: James worked on new Hoverbear base design. However, the new design will not get off ground so another route might need to be explored. Tomorrow he will try to find plastic cardboard to in an alternative base design.

7:00pm - 10:00pm: Lucas worked on the hoverbear design with James. Tomorrow, Lucas will try to optimize the design by taking off any extra weight, etc.

8:30pm - 10:15pm: Michael helped work on the Hoverbear base design and build, and uploaded a working ultrasonic distance sensor code.

Goals for the week:

  • Monday: Base will be finished
  • Tuesday: Sensors should be able to notice something in front of them and send a signal to something else

Week of March 3rd

March 9

12:00pm - 2:30pm: Lucas and James worked together through Facetime. While Lucas worked on some coding, James created a base for the hovercraft and attached fan. Craft had a little bit of lift. Then, Lucas guided James through creating a skirt for the craft. When the skirt was added, much more lift was achieved. James made a video of the craft gaining lift and added it to the log.

March 7

10:00pm - 10:30pm: Lucas, Michael, and James met. Lucas gave James the Delta Fan and other physical materials. Lucas filled out the Midterm Assessment. 2:50pm - 3:30pm: Lucas added a video section to the main page of Hoverbear and worked on coding.

March 6

5:00pm - 6:00pm: Michael identified possible bases to use for the hoverboard from the library, waited for a second opinion on his choices, then delivered the poster board to Lopata.

11:00pm - 11:30pm: Lucas added code to Github.

March 4

8:00pm - 9:00pm: James and Lucas tested out the Talentcell with the Delta Fan. At half charge, the Delta Fan was able to lift slightly (less than .25 cm) off the ground. Lucas spent the rest of the time exploring shedding weight off of the Delta Fan.

3:00pm - 3:30pm: James went to Hitzeman to get the battery. It arrived, and will be brought to Lucas later.

12:30pm - 12:45pm: Michael did some research online to try and find a suitable piece of cardboard that doesn't cost $30 in shipping.

9:00am - 9:30am: James went to Hitzeman to get the battery, it still was not there due to some problems with shipping.

9:45am - 10:15am: Lucas organized the budget and put it into table form so it can be easier to read on the main wiki page for the Hoverbear Log. I'll try to update the pi-graph before Spring Break.

March 3

9:00pm - 9:15pm: Lucas and James called on the phone. James says he can work on the Hoverbear on Saturday and part of Sunday since he is leaving for Spring Break a little late. I'll give back the Delta fan and Ultrasonic Distance Sensor to him before then so he has the materials he needs to do so.

March 2

10:00 am - 11:15am: James went to Hitzeman multiple time trying to get battery but not there.

Week of February 24th

February 26

3:00pm - 3:45pm: Lucas found a rechargeable Lithium Ion battery that was under the price of $30.00, 12V, 3,000mAh, and USB portable.

February 27

4:30pm - 5:00pm: Michael worked on the nightlight box design, but realized that more specific dimensions may be needed to more precisely locate where the holes would need to be placed for the photoresistor, switch and LEDs.

February 25

12:30pm - 12:45pm: Michael took dimensions of the nightlight to be able to better build the box

8:00pm - 8:30pm: Lucas received one Delta fan, the servomotors, and one Ultrasonic Distance Sensor from James. Lucas found some code online that tests the Ultrasonic Distance Sensor and repeatedly outputs the closest object. The Ultrasonic Distance Sensor worked as expected when connected to an Arduino with the uploaded code.

February 24

3:30pm - 5:30pm: James went out and met with a battery professional at batteries + bulbs but came up empty-handed. We will go out again a day this week to get the battery but at least the other parts have been received at the mail center.

3:00pm - 3:30pm: Lucas researched coding for the Ultrasonic Distance Sensor.

Week of February 17th

February 23

11:00am - 12:00pm: The materials, not including the battery and cardboard, were picked up from Hitzeman.

February 18

12:30pm - 12:45pm, 2:00pm - 2:30pm: Michael added the finishing touches to the "blinky" code, took video and uploaded both of these things to the github repository.

February 17

8:30pm - 9:15pm: Michael wrote a blink code for the Arduino and made a bunch of small changes to the log.

Tentative goals for the coming week: Take the measurements for the nightlight case and build it in SolidWorks, get presentation approved, order parts for the project.

February 16

1:00pm - 4:00pm: Lucas took time to learn Arduino programming language.

Week of February 10th

February 15

3:00pm - 4:00pm: Lucas, Michael, and James met at class and listened to presentations.

4:00pm - 4:45pm: Lucas re-re-refinalized the budget.

4:00pm - 5:30pm: Michael soldered the nightlight successfully. Pictures of the nightlight circuit can be found here: [1].

February 12

8:00pm - 8:30pm: Lucas found a possible 12V battery to add to the budget.

7:00pm - 8:00pm: Lucas, Michael, and James met together and organized the wiki.

3:00pm - 4:00pm: Lucas worked on the budget and put a pie graph of the budget onto the main Hoverbear page as well as the preliminary presentation and added to the log.

7:00pm - 8:00pm: Michael worked on the log and tinkered with some settings and formatting (apparently trying to get hyperlinks to display other text doesn't work), uploaded the new circuit board diagram, and helped other group members with a few minor things.

February 11

5:00pm - 5:30pm: Michael created the updated version of the circuit board diagram which better reflects the fact that the nightlight components are being soldered into a perf board and not a breadboard. This newer file can be seen to the right.

Final Hoverbear Nightlight Circuit board diagram.png

6:00pm - 8:15pm: James worked on the preliminary presentation.

Michael uploaded the circuit diagram for the night light that was made on the previous day. This file is no longer up to date, but if you wish to see it, it can be viewed here: [2]

Week of February 3rd

February 10th

7:00pm - 9:15pm: James made the Gantt chart.

8:30pm - 9:30pm: Michael drew up a circuit diagram.

February 9th

4:00pm - 4:45pm: Lucas edited the presentation for the preliminary group presentation.

February 7th

5:00pm - 6:00pm: Michael and Lucas met together to establish a rough template of the preliminary group presentation and also organized the main page. James took some time to meet up and they talked about potential goals for the coming week. Michael will finish the perf board diagram.

February 6th

5:00pm - 5:30pm: Our group met with Professor Feher and discussed where we are at currently in terms of the nightlight and the hoverboard and how we can proceed from our current position. We have a video of the breadboard working, but the file type (.3gp) was not compatible with the wiki, and the converter I tried using added a massive watermark that obscured the contents of the video, so for the time being there is no video.

8:00pm - 9:00pm: Michael worked the basic formatting for the wiki page and edited and expanded the group log.

11:15pm - 11:30pm: Michael attempted to get the video uploaded to the wiki for a bit before deciding that the best course of action would be to simply re-record at a future point in time.

February 4th

7:00pm - 8:30pm: Our group completed the nightlight circuit, and established some tentative future meeting times.

February 2nd

1:15pm - 1:45pm: Our group worked on the project proposal and discussed whether to use a Raspberry Pi or Arduino.

Week of January 27th

February 1

3:00pm - 4:00pm: In class, our group received all of the pieces needed to create a working nightlight circuit. We set up a time to work on the nightlight and assigned James to work on the budget and project proposal.

January 28

10:00pm - 11:00pm: Our group met at Umrath House to establish what our project should be. We came to the conclusion that we would make a hoverboard of some sort that would be able to maneuver around obstacles.

12:00pm - 12:30pm: Our group met with Professor Feher in Urbauer Hall 015, where we discussed what we would be doing. We will be spending a decent number of our future meetings.

Link to Project page