To better understand bridges, we used design programs, index card tests, and sample structures to get an idea of how we wanted our final bridge to turn out Once we created a successful scale model, we constantly refined it and added newer and stronger portions to our full scale bridge We also created the ROV within the length limits and finally tested the strength of the completed bridge
First Step: Before we could start drawing or thinking about our designs, we used a Bridge Design Program to better understand the basic structure, tension and compression of bridges We determined that the ratio of size of the bridge and the ROV are directly proportional
Second Step: After we used the design program, we created a very basic design of a bridge on paper and determined the dimensions within the parameters given We also used trial and error design methods to test strengths and weaknesses in design We also began making some sketches of the ROV model
Third Step: We then spent a lot of time determining how much material we would use and refined our design to get rid of any weak points in the design This step mainly focused on material management and reinforcement of design pieces The ROV plan was finalized and reviewed for efficiency and stability
Fourth Step Once we had a list of all of the items we would need to construct the bridge, we began systematically cutting, gluing, and constructing the bridge pieces We interchanged parts of the ROV for stronger and/or lighter parts in hopes to create a successful design
Once we finished constructing the bridge, we added in as many final supports that we could and we tested the final product with the ROV!
With only four group members, we relied heavily on each other to work together and get the job done well The success we had was because of our clear plan from the beginning and great teamwork and work management Splitting into two groups helped us focus on two different but related tasks and greatly increased the amount of work we were able to get done
Darren Draper helped with the design and construction of the bridge and ROV Sinem Sargin helped with the design and construction of the bridge as well as taking pictures Ryan Vo helped with the design and construction of the ROV Marquel Jones-Francis helped the design and construction of the ROV
Overall, we didn’t face many obstacles throughout construction After seeing many designs of other groups and online, the design of the bridge changed on a day to day basis with new information that we learned ◦ This made us rethink the best design to create a bridge, but we made sure we never made cuts until we knew exactly how it was going to look Our main obstacle was that the ROV was too big for the bridge width ◦ We eventually redesigned the ROV three times to create the best size possible
We also faced some problems with the ROV construction, making sure it had enough power, and making sure everything was tight and compact ◦ This problem was not fully overcome by the end of day two of design/building, and thus why our robot is not fully functional ◦ This problem posed the biggest threat to our success because our bridge was strong enough to hold the ROV, but the ROV had trouble getting mobile
Instead of building the entire bridge as one big piece, we tried to separate the sections and then connected them at the end ◦ This decreased strength because not all measurements were perfect, and made it harder to put it all together When we cut the Balsa wood, the wood would splinter or crunch, and decrease integrity of the pieces we put together ◦ We solved this by doubling and trpling some sections of the bridge we constructed in hopes of strengthening the supports
We also had a lot of trouble correlating the design measurements of the ROV and bridge and that took time and labor to fix Another obstacle we ran into was time ◦ Although we were given two days to construct the bridge and ROV, it still wasn’t enough time to create a perfect ROV that filled all of our expectations
We would improve the project first and foremost by getting better, stronger pieces of wood to work with ◦ The Balsa wood given was an equivalent to sponge, and lacked concrete strength to begin with Another path we would take if we had more time, would be attempting to plan in depth to create a design that would use less materials, and use them in the most beneficial way possible We would also improve the project by trying to find a smaller robotics kit to make a smaller but still capable robot to do the job ◦ This would take some stress off the bridge design and allow it to be as small as possible
First and foremost, we all learned that frustration and exhaustion is part of engineering. ◦ This is just a fact of eningeering of every type of engineering and we definitely felt the effects of it after putting in two 11 hour days We again learned about the importance of job distribution and the need for good communication between partners With only four group members, we split into two groups and focused two people on the bridge and two people on the ROV-this saved time, focus, and materials We learned a lot about material consumption and more importantly, the importance of precision of creation. ◦ Even though we may have designed the pieces correctly, it was important that we cut them and glue them together in a fashion that maintained strength and integrity of the bridge without using too much material We learned about the importance of the step-by-step process needed before construction can even start ◦ Planning is key to an engineers success and always relying on basic sketches and designs will ensure that success We also learned the importance of team work and division of labor ◦ Without this fact in mind, we wouldn’t have been able to finish as much as we did
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