Day 190 – Control Unit & Access Point

Hello!

It’s Barney again. I am here to give a few updates regarding S.A.R.T’s progress, considering we haven’t had an update for cough two months cough. We decided to remove the Xirrus XR-600 from the control unit and we are going to replace it with the Unifi AP AC PRO because the Xirrus access point is getting rather old. We still have to run some tests for the new Unifi AP, but it should use less power. It was a pain to set it up, and even though I had instructions, I failed. Something you should know: If the instructions tell you to use Google Chrome during setup, use Chrome and not Firefox.

Alex (one of the mentors) took the AP home and managed to get it working (thanks Alex)! I don’t know what I did, but it must’ve been something stupid – I am not a fan of cloud managed APs when you don’t actually have a “cloud”. Alex was able to get it working by connecting it to our existing access point and using the UniFi Controller through that network. As it turns out, the router is a picky worker. Within the next week, I’ll be looking into stress testing it.

Regarding the control unit, there will be several major changes. The old monitor is broken, apparently something was sticking up in the case and the vehicle transporting our control unit went over a pothole (you can probably guess the rest).  This was my fault, I have earned a new nickname. I am trying to look into a more energy efficient monitor to save power and increase running time. Cannibalising a dead laptop monitor was suggested, and I am also looking into USB powered monitors.

The computer within the control panel might be getting an upgrade, as we are investigating whether it is feasible to use an UDOO x86 Ultra. However, we have no idea how it will perform compared to Microsoft Surface Pro (currently in use) with regards to image processing and recognition.

It turns out a lead-acid battery is not the lightest thing to carry around. I am looking into a new and much lighter battery for the control unit in order to make it a bit more practical (as nobody likes carrying a 12kg battery). We are looking into lithium-ion batteries to power the access point, monitor and UDOO (If the surface wins the battle, we will just charge the battery before the runs).

A few things that will come up in later post:

  • Access point testing results (Next week?)
  • Details regarding Mk 3.5 and Mk 4’s plans
  • Image processing(Unknown time)
  • Battery (4 weeks at least)
  • Autonomy Progress (2 weeks)

 

 

Thanks for reading!

Regards, Barney Bruckner

S.A.R.T Autonomy Programmer

(Special thanks to Connor Kneebone, Mathew Williams and Jack Williams for grammatical edits and suggestions)

 

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