PCBWay 3rd PCB Design Contest

Missouri S&T Underwater Robotics Team

Who We Are

The Missouri University of Science and Technology's Underwater Robotics Team is a design team focused around the safety and health of the world's bodies of water. We compete annually in the MATE ROV competition, where teams from across the globe compete in a competition structured around real-world tasks such as inspecting dams, clearing pipe blockage, determining and improving the health of coral reefs, and other related tasks. We are a new team and are looking for sponsorship for our first-ever competition this summer.

What We Do

Underwater Robotics requires strong mechanical, computer, and electrical engineering skills. As a team of undergraduate members, getting real-world experience for the knowledge gained in class is incredibly valuable. In addition, we must manage ourselves as a company, with operating budgets, timelines, advertising, and lots of competition.

Mechanical & Software

We design and fabricate our own frame, enclosure parts, manipulators, and other additions to our ROV. We use SolidWorks and a mix of 3d printing, CNC, waterjet, and even lost PLA Aluminum casting to create these systems.

Our code base is in C++ and Arduino. The MATE ROV competition has a high focus on AI vision and driving, which is a difficult challenge due to visual distortion due to water and 3D movement.

Electrical Systems

Our ROV is a tethered system. We are supplied 48VDC at 30A, and must regulate this on-ROV for our purposes. Our thrusters use 12 volts and are nearly all of our power draw, so the first challenge is regulating 48VDC down to 12VDC at nearly 1500 watts efficiently. This is done on our power distribution board.

Also run through the tether is our video and control communication lines- we use two channels of differentially signaled composite video multiplexed and amplified by our main logic board and de-differentialized by our surface control board. Our communication is done through RS485.

Between our main enclosure and all modules, such as cameras and our manipulator, we run 24VDC and i2C along with a video feed. Each module requires a circuit board to regulate this along with accomplishing the tasks of that module, such as motor or camera control.

We also have various module programmer and tester boards not shown here.

All of our systems use a mix of various Atmel AVR MCU's due to simplicity and versatility, and we use 2 and 4 layer boards with 1 and 2 oz copper traces. We hand-solder all of our parts, which are a mix of SMD and THT parts.

Why We Need PCBWay!

Because we are a new team, we have a limited budget for prototyping and assembling electrical systems. Circuit boards take up a large chunk of our budget, and sponsorship would free our members up to make more revisions and better systems. We appreciate your consideration!

For more information about the Missouri University of Science and Technology, please visit https://www.mst.edu.

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524 Projects Sponsored
Oct 08,2019
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