Trash-Bot

Bill Kearney wrote:


C'mon, guys, all this stuff is _way_ too complicated. It's not the _robot_ you need to place accurately, it's the _trash_. I recommend using Kevlar-reinforced bags, an extra-heavy-duty trash can, a bit of silicon carbide and water, and a spark plug--ta-daa! the Trash Cannon. Measure the weight of the trash bag, and adjust the amount of carbide with a PIC controlling a small motorized hopper. The metering curve would have to be calibrated experimentally.
Alternatively, if local laws or jumpy neighbours render pyrotechnics inappropriate, you could use a Trash Trebuchet. This would have the advantage of a much more predictable trajectory, since the initial velocity of the payload is more nearly constant than with a gun.
Either of these would solve the navigation problem, since the relative positions of trash can and curb can be calibrated in advance, and both would be a bit big and nasty to steal. (Control algorithm suggestions welcomed.) A small CO2 laser (eye-safe!) could be used to shoo pedestrians out of the line of fire.
Cheers,
Phil Hobbs
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On Fri, 20 Jan 2006 13:19:02 -0500, Phil Hobbs

I once toyed with the idea of trash cans sunken into the ground, walk outside, step on foot-pedal to open lid.
On trash pickup day the cans would rise out of the ground so the automated trucks could grab them and empty.
...Jim Thompson
--
| James E.Thompson, P.E. | mens |
| Analog Innovations, Inc. | et |
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snipped-for-privacy@My-Web-Site.com says...

I've seen such things. Forty years ago neighbors had something similar, though there was nothing automatic in it. I think there is the problem of someone falling in and breaking a leg; lawyers.
--
Keith

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Jim Thompson wrote:

Hi Jim, Actually, about 25 years ago, my mom and dad had underground trash cans. You walked out to the street, stepped on a raised part of the lid, and dropped your trash into the can. The garbage guys had to open a larger lid, and lift the whole can (a pretty typical galvanized one) out of the hole, and then empty it into the truck. Biggest problem was you usually filled the can, and then had to stack bags up on top. Since this was Palm Desert, you had to worry about wildlife spreading the trash all over the place from the bags, but I think that was why they had the in-ground cans in the first place.
Charlie
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^ ^ ^ ^
SiC + 2H2O > SiO2(passivates) + CH4 (with some insane activation energy around white heat, I'm sure)
Wrong carbide ;-)
Tim ("Damnit Jim I'm a doctor not an escalator")
-- Deep Fryer: a very philosophical monk. Website: http://webpages.charter.net/dawill/tmoranwms
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Tim Williams wrote:

My bad. Safest cannon on the block, though. How about nitrogen tri-iodide?
Cheers,
Phil Hobbs
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On Fri, 20 Jan 2006 16:57:24 -0500, Phil Hobbs wrote:

CaC2 + H2O => C2H2 + CaO
C2H2 + 4O2 => 2CO2 + 2H2O + boom! ;-)
Cheers! Rich
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Phil Hobbs wrote:

If you build it big enough, you can lob the trash bags into the garbage truck from a couple blocks away.
--
Service to my country? Been there, Done that, and I've got my DD214 to
prove it.
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Phil Hobbs wrote:

Ah yes......my favorite instrument of warfare.....the trebuchet. I want to build one for my back yard that will launch a water balloon to the stop sign located six houses down from mine (about 700'). That way I can get even with the local hoodlums that like to fly past my house when they approximate their stop at the corner. It will need to be quiet, triggerable by remote control (no problem on that) and auto reloading. That way I can sit in the front yard and enjoy the fun. :-D I really like the kind that use simple leverage and weight, no springs.
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"Launching a Missile at a Motor Vehicle." Class 6 misdemeanor. I know this all too well.
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On Fri, 20 Jan 2006 13:30:05 -0700, Jim Thompson wrote:

And if you could teach your dog to use the foot pedal, you wouldn't need to clean up after him. ;-)
Cheers! Rich
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Bwahahahaha! Having been to Punkin' Chunkin' I can well imagine how well a siege engine would go over in most neighborhoods.
Up next... the piano!
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a
I can only imagine how badly beseiged castle defenders must have felt when they saw a couple of those suckers appear off in the distance heading their way.
-- Bobby G.
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Hmmm, get the truck to broadcast it's GPS coordinates and you'd really have something!
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On Fri, 20 Jan 2006 18:00:28 -0500, Bill Kearney wrote:

Actually, the truck could have several pre-determined stop areas. Just imagine. It pulls up to a stop area, opens up the tarp covering the payload area, and at the stroke of 6:00 AM (or whatever) garbage bags come flying in from all quarters. At 6:01 AM, the driver puts the tarp back in place over the payload and drives on to the next stop area.
--Mac
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don't
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hack it

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requirements that

If you can lob it that far, you can stop paying the garbage service altogether. And you don't even have to hit the truck.
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Richard Henry wrote:

Actually, there is almost no garbage generated here at my house. With my special diet for Diabetes and my high blood pressure I have to eat very controlled meals. that means that it can take over a month to fill a single trash can. I recycle the tin cans and plastic bottles, so I make a trip to the transfer station every three or four weeks to drop them off, and dump the trash can. This way it cost me under a dollar a month to get rid of everything, including cardboard boxes and the bare computer chassis that have been stripped for parts.
--
Service to my country? Been there, Done that, and I've got my DD214 to
prove it.
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Narrowing down the conditions in order to get a firm specification description, I'll go with...
Shape, Base vehicle: I might as well use something like this wagon: http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber=38137 Or this one with a wood deck http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber=37320
But I was thinking along the line of something a bit bigger than those wagons. Perhaps just mounting a box on one of those wagons would work.
However, I can ignore the box vertical dimension in the prototype. The prototype would be just be a flat piece of " plywood 35" x 60" divided into three sections, the 10" front equipment section, the 40" cargo section, and the rear 10" equipment section. The equipment sections would both be 10 inches wide. In other words, the 60" length of the plywood is divided into 10"+40"+10" sections.
Front equipment section: containing the front viewing camera, steering servo and steering mechanism.
Rear equipment section: To the rear of the bed would be the battery and the drive motor & gearbox.
Material: Aluminum; however, plywood would do for a working prototype.
Size: 12 inches high, (but prototype is flat) 35 inches wide overall, by 60 inches in overall length
Path: For simplicity, the bot will drive one-way only on an elliptical track. There will be two parking positions: One will be the primary work station (Home), where it docks with the recharger and is in a position to receive cargo from the household, plastic garbage bags. Coupling with the recharger is inductive. The second parking position (the Curb), would be by the curb where the trash gets picked up. We'll use bags to avoid the problem of the garbage men dealing with cans.
The positioning is controlled by time alone. Most of the time, the bot is at Home. On garbage day, it moves to the Curb, stays there all day, and then returns Home.
Physical Path indicator: In this initial model, we'll paint a white line down the center of the path. The path will be lit by regular photocell-controlled flood lights.
Steering control... ...is accomplished by a video system using a regular UPS-connected camera attached to a computer running Windows XP and some software
It would be nice if everything, the steering mechanism, and the drive mechanism be controlled via USB port connections.
Drive: Only one wheel is motorized for traction. And the speed is very slow, perhaps a couple miles per hour.
Power Everything is operated on a 12 Volt DC system provided by a standard car battery. Recharging is via an inductive coupling at Home. -- (||) Nehmo (||)
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On Sat, 21 Jan 2006 15:04:01 -0800, Nehmo wrote:

Well, however you do it, don't use a "car" battery. They're optimized for "cold cranking amps", but not for deep discharge. Use wheelchair batteries, golf cart batteries, trailer batteries, boat batteries, any kind of "deep cycle" battery, but _don't_ use a car battery.
I'm curious - is this a one-off for home use, or are you talking about fielding an actual product for market?
Good Luck! Rich
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You are correct in that a deep-cycle battery is preferable to a "car" battery, which are optimized for the quick discharge. http://auto.howstuffworks.com/question219.htm . But the demands are low in this situation, so the choice isn't critical. A cheaper 12 V lead-acid battery of almost any type would do.
I chose 12 V because there are plenty of really-available components that work at that voltage.

I basically want to make a working thing, and I'm in the design & engineering phase. I can assess market potential after I have a working prototype. I'm not concentrating on that now. For now, I'm working with the concept that this is a one-off project.
--
(||) Nehmo (||)


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