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|Target Environment||Locomotion Method|
|Sensors / Input Devices||Actuators / Output Devices|
IR proximity detectors
|Control Method||Power Source|
|CPU Type||Operating System|
|over a dozen microcontrollers||N/A|
|Time to build||Cost to build|
|URL for more information|
|This is our latest robot, a machine based on a very recent concept in programming and physical hardware using Priority Arbitration Architecture, implemented in a strictly hardware fashion. What this means is rather than a single large processor controlling her, PAAMI has over a dozen microcontrollers running in parallel, simultaneously. The basics are simple, a layered series of behaviors each programmed into one processor and running independently of the other behaviors. All 8 layers of behaviors are in order of priority, with the most important at the top of the stack. The behaviors control of the robot is arbitrated by the arbiter processor, which allows only the highest priority processor that is requesting control over the robot to actually have full control. So each processor can be programmed separately, and finished before we move on to higher level of behaviors. This makes the programming 10x easier, but the amount of hardware is increased a bit.
On the electrical side, PAAMI has two 12v gel cells - one for electronics and one for the drive motors. Two 5x7 circuit boards are point to point wired with ribbon cable interconnection. All Processors are PIC processors running at 10MHz each, of several different types. She carries her own constant current dual battery charger to simplify docking connection to two contacts. All drive, LCD and other signals between processors are send along 9600kb serial busses. Access to the electronics is through the hinged lid on top, which the beacon sensor is mounted. Programming is done in PICbasic from Micro Engineering Labs and burned with the Microchip Picstart Plus burner.