For those of you that stay updated with our blog, you probably saw our post yesterday announcing our second trip to Arizona State University.Last year, Circuit Specialists teamed up with the ASU branch of IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) to host a series of Arduino development workshops. Our first challenge was for the students to build an Arduino powered trip-activated laser alarm system. Once we realized how much the students love this kind of lab, we were anxious to do another!
This time around, we wanted to make the challenge a little more difficult (for returning students), as well as add a layer of head-to-head competition.
Our solution, BREADBOARD BATTLESHIPS!These arduino powered “battleships” were a 2 part machine; the laser alarm circuit (adapted from the last lab), combined with a dual servo motor / potentiometer control.
Students were first challenged to take the code we developed in the last lab, and make it work in the opposite fashion.
Instead of the buzzer sounding when the light was NOT on the sensor, it needed to sound WHEN the light hit the sensor. Sounds simple, but once you get into coding, things get a little tricky.Once the team had a functioning laser / buzzer circuit, it was time to map the potentiometers to the servo motors, and mount the laser to the system. After each team had a fully functional battleship, it was time to start phase two of the competition! The BATTLE!Teams were lined up parallel to each other, a few feet apart. The objective, hit the other team’s sensor before they hit yours.
This is where things got pretty intense! With a total of 9 teams entered into our bracket style tournament, the competition heated up quickly. With so many variables, aiming the turret became one of the most challenging part of the lab.
Turrets jittered, boards shook, and the distance was unknown. In addition, each team setup their battleship a little differently.
The lab was scheduled for 5PM – 6:45PM, but we ended up doing battle all the way through 8PM!
The students were determined to win and take home the grand prize.The final round came down to an epic battle between team Cwazy Weasel and team Laser. We even got the whole battle on video for your enjoyment!
Congratulations to team Laser for taking first place in the competition and winning their own Arduino battleship kit to take home. All in all, we all had a really great time.
The Circuit Specialists team is always honored to pair up with educational networks to help educate and inspire our next generation of makers, builders, and engineers.
If you’re a student, talk to your local engineering department and see if we can set up a lab for you too!
We would also like to extend a special thank you to Ngoni Mugwisi for all of his help in making this possible.
Until next time,
We’re going to be releasing a full build tutorial for this project, but until then, here’s the Breadboard Battleships Code.