Our Second Remote Controller (Alpha V1's ancestor)

A project log for Alpha V1: Open-Source Remote Controller

An open-source Arduino compatible remote controller (transmitter) with many customization options for robots and drones.

alireza-safdarialireza safdari 03/23/2019 at 17:150 Comments
Alpha V1's ancestor based on PS2 controller

We built our second remote controller of the PS2 controller hoping that the end result will be more ergonomic than the last one. Well, let's say we were very wrong. :)

We used this remote controller with our combat robot Mark II. Each joystick was controlling one side of the robot, so it was controlled like a tank.

Mark II combat robot

Mark II had an internal compressor and 2 cylinder to move its front shield. So we added buttons to the PS2 controller to make sure we can control everything. We also added a 3 position radio switch to control the speed of the robot. The sensitivity of the joystick were affected by the position of the radio switch.

We also designed and fabricated a PCB for this remote controller. The PCB was fabricated at university and they it was milling based. The PCB was not beautiful and the via holes had to be soldered from both side, but overall it was better than nothing.

Alpha V1's ancestor's PCB

We learned a lot in the process but we were never happy with the end result and soon enough we started working on a new remote controller. The remote was not ergonomic and building a second unit would be very difficult because we first needed to modify a PS2 controller and then we could build on top of it. Even though we did not want to commercialize the controller at the time, we could understand how important it is to have a modular and easily replaceable parts specially for competitions and when everything goes wrong :). In fact this was our main motive to use Arduino board on all our projects rather than any processor suitable for the job.

We took part in 1 competition with this remote controller.

Mark II and Alpha V1's ancestor at combat robot competition