TKIRV was a great platform, but if we were going to build a 'bot that could survive in the wilderness, we needed solar power, and a more robust construction. Thus, SOLARBOI was born!
Fitted with improved 4G antennas, a new fisheye camera, and a power system capable of making the most of the juice from the sun, SOLARBOI is ready to head out into the world. Missions take place over on Twitch.tv, where we stream live from Mission Control.
As SOLARBOI drives into the night, Mission Control monitors battery voltage, mission distance, and commands the 'bot to navigate the distant streets of a regional Australian town. Command and control is via custom Python code, which runs the drivetrain, steering, and other functions. Batteries have been switched to a dual system, allowing the motors to drain the drive battery without affecting the communication link back to base.
Missions happen regularly, and the ultimate goal is to travel over 10km from the launch point to visit a telephone box still standing despite the advent of cellular technology. Wish us luck, and come check us out on Youtube and Twitch!