Food Collector by Hossein Mobahi

Food Collector is a Semi-Autonomous Robot for Optimal Path Planning.
By Semi-Autonomous I mean the map should be told to the robot 
because it has no sensors. But once it gets the map (inital, 
sub-goals , destination and obtacles positions) it can 
obtain the optimal path for its navigation.

Its software is 4-layer, from planning to signal generation for 
motors.  In the highest level, the A* algorithm is sitting, it 
will do a heuristic search to find the optimal path and generate an
output in form of UP, DOWN, LEFT and RIGHT.
Next layer translates these commands to more primitive ones : 
GO_STRAIGHT, TURN_LEFT and TURN_RIGHT ( because mechanical
system is based on differntial drive method ).
Then another layer takes these commands and produces FORWARD 
or BACKWARD commands for each motor.
In the last layer, appropriate pattern and its duration is 
generated for signaling stppers motors.
The hardware is very simple, it consists of two reigsters and 
two buffers to amplify current. Since it was an
experimental experience, I did not put any microcontroller on 
the robot. It gets connected to the printer port of a PC
and the program runs there.
It took me 3 weeks to build this robot and most of its parts 
were obtained from old and useless instruments. The only
thing I bought was two stepper motors that cost around 15$ .
More pictures may be found at my web page

 -Hossein Mobahi


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