SOLID Learning Electronics – Microcontroller Options

Microcontrollers Icon

Arduinos have been selected by educators as the standard microcontroller for SOLID Learning designs due to the support community, availability, cost and ease of use. Arduinos will be supported by Raspberry Pi and BeagleBone Linux cards for special purposes. Continue reading

MakerBot Replicator Prepares For Work

The MakerBot Replicator post Icon

SOLID Learning received the MakerBot Replicator provided by our sponsor, Bre Pettis, and took care of a minor issue with one extruder nozzle with hte help of the excellent MakerBot customer support staff. We will soon be developing and testing our educational robots! Continue reading

Customer Support from SparkFun

SparkFund Electronics Flame Logo

A note to our supporters: SparkFun Electronics provided excellent support in dealing with a nonfunctional servo acquired for the SOLID Learning pilot program’s robot designs. Before responding they had already sent the replacement part! Continue reading

SOLID Learning – Servo Robot Actuator Selected!

Common hobby servo Icon

Educators and pariticpants have selected Servos as the standard actuator for SOLID Learning pilot robot designs, based on functionality, familiarity, cost and ease of use. Continue reading

SOLID Learning Robot – Solid State Actuators

Shape Memory Alloy (SMA) Linear Actuator Icon

“ANALYSIS: Solid State Actuators provide the most exotic but costly type of actuator, best suited to very small deflections and operations in hostile environments such as vacuum.” Continue reading

SOLID Learning Robot – Linear Actuators

EM Linear Actuator Icon

“ANALYSIS: Linear actuators provide powerful one-dimensional movement, best suited to high-precision and high-force requirements when other alternatives will not suffice.” Continue reading

SOLID Learning Robot – Servos

Common hobby servo Icon

“ANALYSIS: Servos provide a flexible option, easily controlled in large numbers using digital electronics. They are best suited to mobile lightweight robotic designs where the rigid outer shell can be incorporated as a structural element of the robot.” Continue reading

SOLID Learning Robot – Stepper Motors

Common Stepper Motor Icon

“ANALYSIS: Stepper motors provide an expensive option that is very precise but power-hungry even when idle. Steper motors are best suited to fixed robotic designs requring incremental repeatable control over a large span.” Continue reading

SOLID Learning Robot – DC Motors

Simple DC Motor Icon

“ANALYSIS: DC motors provide an inexpensive option for elementary robotics lacking the need for precision or fine control.” Continue reading

SOLID Learning Robot Components

Makerbot's Robot Mascot Statue

SOLID Learning integrates 3D printed objects into educational settings and the pilot will need electronics, sensors and motors to turn 3D printed frames into movable useful robots. I will examine different components this week and link each here for review. Continue reading