In my last blog, Syracuse University Senior Design Project, I talked about the machine that my Senior Project group designed and built. The machine needed to pick up and sort different types of balls for two minutes on test day.

Since the last post, the machine conducted a test run on a turf surface, and its final test on the field of the Syracuse University Carrier Dome.


During the test run, my group found flaws in the design of our motion system. To fix this issue, we doubled the size of the wheels and 3D printed new ball casters. This allowed for the machine to move better on the turf surface, allowing the machine to pick up more balls on the final test day. By using 3D printing, my team was able to quickly implement modifications for the machine at little cost (which showed the benefits of 3D printing when needing to prototype and make changes in limited time).


On test day, the machine’s performance was fantastic. Our machine was the first to go. The first ball that needed to be picked up was a lacrosse ball. Due to unforeseen issues with the door to the storage container not opening, we only picked up one ball. However the machine would be the only one to successfully pick up and deposit a lacrosse ball.


For the next run, the machine was assigned golf balls. On this run, the machine collected nine, but only six made it into the collection basket. This still resulted in our machine picking up the second most balls out of all the machines. Here is a video from the second run.




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