Piggy has evolved! He is back in the on-site lab keeping an eye on what’s happening to his friend FROG.
And what is happening? Hardware enhancements and improvements on the demo mission.
Paulo Alvito and Carlos Marques have been working together to place 2 new fans, adjust the position of the projector (so that it no longer touches the window in the shell), reinstate the function of the Electronics Power Button (UPO had put in an override to power down the UvA cameras) and install a new device to power down the Dalsas and the lasers, and touch up FROG’s paintwork. You’ll find Piggy on the corner of the desk where he can survey his domain.
Later, Carlos will install a new, small controller board on the docking station. Using sensors, this will detect the robot when it enters the docking station and consequently turn on the power to the docking station. As soon as the FROG leaves the docking station the controller will turn the power off again. This is an important safety measure. The docking station will be left unattended in the shop at the main entrance to the Royal Alcàzar where (obviously) visitors (and therefore children) can enter at any time.
We arrived at the Alcázar this morning to find that our lab in the Tennis Court had been taken over by a film crew – the film crew of the TV series Violetta, no less! This was not exactly according to plan but as always the Royal Alcázar came up with a quick solution – a temporary lab for us until after filming.
Yet another beautiful room…
Violetta has a large crew and, it would seem, a larger group of uniformed security guys with walkie-talkies. Unfortunately they wouldn’t let us take any photo’s while they were filming so we’ll just have to watch the series to see them in our lab. But, here’s one of the security chaps with a mobile as well as a walkie-talkie.
This week the guys from UT are using UPO’s simulation environment on the protoFROG (the UT Campus robot) to test some new features for guiding missions.
From the 15 to the 26 of September, FROG (the green one) will be running these missions for experiments and evaluation tests at the Royal Alcázar in Seville. Unlike this simulation, the FROG will actually be driving around to run its missions.
FROG has appeared on what is considered to be the most viewed television channel in Europe – TF1! A French film crew came to talk to the researchers during an integration and experimentation week at the Royal Alcázar in Seville:
FROG has a new friend. Piggy just arrived one morning to help the researchers. Was he a mascot or a spirit guide? We may never know! But somehow when things got exciting Piggy was heard to snort an encouraging: “oink-oink!”.
The UPO research team has made a mockup of the space where the FROG will go to recharge. UPO is finalizing their implemention of the docking sequence.
After testing, the docking station will be placed in the shop near the entrance of the Royal Alcazar. This will be the FROG’s base for all of next week. When it is running low on power, the robot will return to the shop, align itself to the docking station and drive on to recharge its batteries.
This lab has a view of the Tennis Courtyard of the Royal Alcazar and the tower of the cathedral.