We wanted to take a minute and show one of the connector systems that we use most often for building robots. The Powerpole connectors from Anderson Power Products are modular and genderless. This means that we can make all sorts of cable assemblies very quickly while only keeping one set of pins and connector housings around. The housings come in different colors, and pins come in 15, 30, and 45 amp versions (there are larger versions for more current but we rarely use those since our robots do not usually have wire thicker than 10-12 gauge). They handle vibrations well, while at the same time are easy to mate and unmate. On AERO, we are using Powerpoles on the motor controllers and the Harmonic Drive amplifier.
The water cooling system is filled. We had a small pinhole defect in one fitting that we changed and now we are leak free. The reservoir on top is temporary to help us remove bubbles from the system.
In addition to modifying the power supply case, we needed to add PCI-E connectors for the NVIDIA Tesla and an additional 8-pin EPS connector for the motherboard. We trimmed unneeded wires, and organized the wires using the snake-skin cable sleeving. It is very easy to make very professional looking cable harnesses with cable sleeving and a little bit of adhesive lined heat shrink tubing. The regular heat shrink tubing unfortunately does not do a good job of keeping the sleeving from sliding around. The grey tape is silicone self fusing electrical tape (3M Scotch 70) which is very good at bundling the harnesses and provides a little bit of protection at the bend of the harnesses. The tape is pretty cool because it doesn’t stick to anything except itself.
We are making good progress so far. Check out our newest timelapse.
We have started moving the computer from Polly, the development platform, onto AERO. This will be a multi-day process, but today we made good progress on routing the water cooling lines inside AERO’s back compartment. Look for updates on the modifications on the ATX harnesses soon.
We ran a test of the classifier algorithm today with disturbances in the camera field of view. We are very happy with the results so far!
Our DC ATX power supply from Powerstream came in a slightly larger case than the ATX standard. So, we got rid of the case, cut a new one from Delrin, and wrapped it in copper tape for EMI shielding. An 80mm fan provides airflow and the exhaust will duct out of the rear of the robot.