Created: May 2006
The idea for The Slug appeared to me when I read an article about a small slug-like robot the NASA had developed to send it up to walls or even ceilings.
Though my robot has no phlegm on its “foot” (I presume it could be done but haven’t tried so far), it’s nevertheless mimicking the molluscan “one-foot creeping” and capable of moving in any direction (no walls or ceilings, yet!).
The challenge (and fun) here has been to find a way to get a mobile NXT robot moving in other directions than fore-and-aft when its forward movement is propelled by one single motor only.
My original thought on weight-shifting did not work in connection with “the foot” (though I tried a lot!) , hence I performed some trick with a hidden propeller wheel (an obvious enhancement in this context would be moving the front part of the “foot” laterally).
This project has allowed me to learn a lot about strategies for building a rather complex and concurrently compact and solid NXT robot, alongside with gaining knowledge on different ways of redirecting the torsion of an NXT motor.
Concentrating on the hardware aspects, I’ve kept the program very simple so far, enabling The Slug to creep and to dodge obstacles detected by the touch sensor only.
Future versions of the program may
integrate the light sensor to creep away from bright environments
use the sensors to “investigate” things The Slug encounters.