Monday, June 16, 2008


So, you've fitted some motors to your robot and its happily driving around but it probably keeps colliding with obstacles and getting stuck. You need a way for your robot to detect collisions and move around objects. Enter the humble bump sensor:

A bump sensor is probably one of the easiest ways of letting your robot know it's collided with something. The simplest way to do this is to fix a micro switch to the front of your robot in a way so that when it collides the switch will get pushed in, making an electrical connection. Normally the switch will be held open by an internal spring.

Micro switches are easy to connect to micro controllers because they are either off or on, making them digital. All micro controllers are digital, so this is a match made in heaven. Micro switch 'bump' sensors are easily connected to the Robocore, simply plug them into any free digital socket and away you go.

The following diagram shows a typical circuit for a micro switch bump sensor. The resistor is important because it holds the signal line at ground while the switch is off. Without it the signal line is effectively 'floating' because there is nothing connected to it, and may cause unreliable readings as the processor tries to decide if the line is on or off.

If you dont get these microswitches u can make one easily , using a spring mechanism.

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