Larry the Drop bot
Background story for Larry
Its into the future and we finally found a planet that is almost the size of our Earth and perfect for humans to inhabit. It has water, gaint trees (for the lack of Carnivores on the planet), breathable air (granted its 21.5% of oxygen instead of 20.95%) and clean good water. After a few years of research and sending probes/bots to analyze soil, plants and all, scientists found the perfect place to start settlements. As final leg for the decade(s) long project is done in 3 stages
Stage a is what this bot, Larry, is all about. Larry (and there are lot more of Larry's) is sent with supplies to build a habitat and basic tools. All the supplies are embedded inside the bot. Larry(s) will be put in individual pods and sent down the planet atmosphere to the co-ordinates predetermined by the scientists. Once Larry wakes up on the planet surface, he has to look for spots with basically no big objects/trees etc, If Larry encounters an object in the way, he will turn 45 degrees and continue the search again to find suitable space. If there are no obstructions, the plan is to build habitats in a row (ideal).
Second stage bots (which are currently under design and scheduled to finish prototype by Sept 2018) will be launched once Larry(s) finish their objective. The second stage bots will then open the supplies and use them to build livable habitats. The third stage will be to send humans along with seeds (for crops, trees etc).
To achieve the objective of dropping the supplies, I used a new method with piston. Connecting the piston to a motor, I used the rotation and advancement of the piston to push the supplies out of the hole. This helped me to keep the supplies horizontal rather than vertical which helps in keeping the height of the bot lower (that helps with center of gravity). Ofcourse to detect any obstructions, ultrasound sensors worked great although might need some on the side of the bot as well for more accurate picture of the surroundings.
Larry worked great as a prototype! Hope you enjoyed it as well.