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This section can be divided down into individual member projects and group projects. Here is where group members (like YOU!) can contribute stories of your projects. We can also write about our RoboMagellan build and any other future group projects.

2012 RoboMagellan Update

Wheel-E V2.1 competed at the 2012 Chibots SRS RoboMagellan Competition on August 4th and won 2nd place! Several updates were made since the 2011 year including replacing the Mini ITX computer with a Dell Netbook, replacing the GPS and Compass with an ArduPilot board, and upgrading from Nimh batteries to 4S LiPoly packs. A huge thanks again to SolidWorks and MaxBotix Ultrasonic Rangefinders for their continued support of this project! While Wheel-E was able to successfully complete the course once, our other 2 runs did not go as well due to compass accuracy problems and the lack of functional object detection. We’ll return next year with these problems hopefully remedied.


Recorded GPS track for Wheel-E’s 2nd place run at 2012 Chibots SRS RoboMagellan Competition

Wheel-E 2.1 Components:

  • Dell Inspiron Mini 1012 netbook with Intel Atom N450 CPU and 1 GB RAM running 32-bit Windows 7 Professional
  • Atmel AVR-based controller for sensor input and motor control
  • Two Turnigy 4-cell 25C 14.8 V 5000 mAh Li-Po batteries in parallel for 10 AH total capacity
  • Parallax HB-25 electronic speed controllers (2)
  • ML-3506 Planetary Gearmotors (2)
  • CUI encoders (2)
  • Suspension from a Traxxas T-Maxx RC truck in differential drive configuration
  • Pro-Line Road Rage Tires with Traxxas Dished Hubs (4)
  • Chassis designed using SolidWorks 3D CAD design software
  • Custom machined polycarbonate parts fabricated using a Probotix Comet CNC router
  • Custom aluminum and plastic parts fabricated using Sherline CNC lathe and milling machine and a MakerBot Replicator 3D printer
  • MicroRAX aluminum extrusions for chassis lid and netbook mount
  • ArduPilot Mega 2.0 for GPS and compass
  • MaxBotix ultrasonic rangefinders for obstacle detection (4)
  • Cone detection using a Logitech C310 HD webcam on a Lynxmotion pan-and-tilt assembly
  • Programmed using Microsoft Visual Basic 2008 Express and RoboRealm
  • Belkin Wi-Fi for sending telemetry to base station laptop
  • Spektrum 2.4 GHz RC transmitter and receiver for safety stop switch

August 4, 2012 at 8:40 am | Projects | 1 comment

RoboMagellan Update 2

Wheel-E V2.0 competed at the 2011 Chibots SRS RoboMagellan Competition on August 6th. He was well equipped with numerous upgrades including a brand-new custom chassis designed using SolidWorksMaxBotix ultrasonic rangefinders for object detection, and a new GPS unit. Wheel-E v2.0 was ultimately unable to complete the course but the CIRC team learned a great deal and is anxious to return again next year after more testing and troubleshooting. (more…)

October 1, 2011 at 11:25 am | Projects | No comment

RoboMagellan Update 1

Wheel-E v1.5 competed at the Chibots Summer RoboMagellan competition today. He put forth a valiant effort but ultimately was unable to complete the course due to GPS inaccuracies, limited obstacle detection abilities, and a nasty fall during one run which damaged the GPS receiver. Wheel-E v2.0 is already in development and will be ready for next year’s competition! (more…)

July 25, 2010 at 11:22 am | Projects | No comment

RoboMagellan Overview

The RoboMagellan competition was created by the Seattle Robotics Society in part as a low-cost alternative to the DARPA grand challenge. Intrigued by the idea of vehicles that can autonomously navigate outdoor environments, the group devised a competition in which robots navigate between GPS waypoints through a college park type environment. During their run (more…)

February 21, 2010 at 11:15 am | Projects | No comment