Let's Make Robots!

The Circuitry for a Hovercraft

Hello, I am very new to circuits and building things in general and I've been spending a lot of time trying to learn the circuits and those sorts of things for building a hovercraft.


My hovercraft consists of 2 propulsion fans and 1 levitation fan and a 12V battery. I will eventually need to add an array of LED and IR sensors, a Light sensor and possibly a distance sensor. And the two servos are for the propulsion fans. I have the basic concepts of the battery and fans so far I think. I am a little confused on certain parts.

Everything needs to be connected to the one battery but I'm unsure of how to do that for the multiple fans, I know you can do it with the motors in parallel but I'm just not able to visualize what that would look like.  So if anyone could help me out there that would be great. Otherwise, how does this look? and any tips for figuring out how the sensors would work in?


Oh...and I did this in paint...is there a better program? I tried to find some but they didnt have any Arduino models.

Circuitry.png36.85 KB

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Out of curiosity, I googled:

"motor mosfet"


"two motor parallel"

A great deal of information was available. Google can be found by searching the term "google" in your search engine of choice.

You're going to benefit from h-bridges here even if the motors aren't two way. Look up the well-documented L29x series on this site or Oddbot's FET controllers. This will direct you in attaching your power supply. Very neat idea for a bot-haven't seen anyone else do it yet. Be sure to document it and write it up as a robot project once you get it started!

Ok sounds great! Thank you! Do you think a MOSFET would work well? How could I incorporate that? 

Yes and no-if you don't have the grounding to make it work you're going to waste your time and money.  Try a ready made 298 board to get the feel (especially with the bigger voltage motors) and protect your investment in the Arduino.

servoes won't be able to do those fans for you. Their rotation locked normally and even if modified to continuously rotate won't produce enough thrust. Or are the servoes just being used to rotate the motor mounts?

Your servoes are wired up nicely, but your motors aren't. The pins your using to operate the transistor don't make a complete circuit. I can't explain it very well though so I'll let someone else. But either way you'll end up with a motor jammed off. You could use a motor driver instead of a transistor.

Awe you actually building the hovercraft chassis or starting from an RC toy?
I also think this will be a relatively uncontrollable platform for a newbie .

Yeah the servos are just being used to rotate the motor mounts. And ok I'll try to look into some motor drivers and see if I can sort of figure it out.

And yeah I'm actually building the hovercraft. I wish I could start somewhere simplier but its for a project and I don't really have time. My group loaded all the circuit duty onto me and I knew nothing about circuits till like a week ago and I've been trying really hard to figure it all out.