Lets Make Robots or Lets Make Radars?
July 1, 2012
A while back I notice the simularity between the Ultrasound/IR sensors we use on robots for object avoidance to the concept of basic RADAR. (This is more like UDAR or IRDAR). Direction and range information are what the controller uses to detect objects (RADARs basically use the same information.)
So instead of building robots for a while I decided to see how good I could make my own IRDAR. Wow! One can adjust trigger point, gain and a bunch of other factors and have a way-cool little system!
For processing, I am first using Uno32 running the standard Arduino sketch. The 32 bit PIC32 on the Uno32 really speeds things up like math, averaging and anything else needing processing power. The display is done on a PC using the free Processing program. (The programming is VERY close to Arduino Sketches.) A lot of the great display section has been "adoped" from the very smart "luckylarry". (His software is old and I do not plan on selling any of it, credit will go to luckylarry at the top of each proogram.) With my many modifications and changes the resemblence to the original programs is minimal. He had a great place to start, but so much more is possible (with my hardware setup basic RADAR funtionality exists at the Uno32, minus the display).
My final plans will be to include a USB based Nerf Missile Launcher so when someone comes in the room the system will "lock-on" to them and fire a foam tipped missle or two. This has been done on the web with a Ultrasound ranger, a stepper motor rotating the sensor and a PIC chip feeding the information to a PC. I LOVE their display and wish I could somehow adapt it to my system (but it is written C# and I am not THAT skilled with that language). Maybe with much more work...
Who gets the picture(s), schematic, and software when I am done? LMR does!!!