Groundhog knee deep in mine muck.2D mine map produced by Groundhog.3D mine map snapshot produced by Groundhog.Ferret1 deployed into the Mellon Institute void.Second generation Ferret with higher power laser range finder.Ferret2 scan of a limestone mine after a domeout, Kansas City, Kansas.Borehole deployable, inflatable mobile robot concept.
Electric Groundhog
Electric Groundhog Layout
Hydraulic Groundhog
Finishing Touches
Field Trials
Spec Sheet
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Electric Groundhog
Top view of Groundhog in its fully electric configuration.Electric Groundhog Layout

Once the chassis was in shape, the next step was wiring up Groundhog so that its movement would actually be controllable. Mechanically this meant taking care of all the details that hadn't been addressed during the "Chassis-in-a-weekend" event.

While the steering columns had been remounted, they had not yet been linked. A large number of people looked at the problem and in the end the simplest solution was choosen. A steel tie rod going diagonally across the base plate tied linked the steering. This linked assembly was actuated with an electric linear actuator donated from one of Red's hay bailers.

The drive train from a golf cart was used to power the electric Groundhog. To counter balance and power this motor the batteries were placed on the opposite side of the baseplate. One of the most interesting elements of Groundhog's configuration at this point is what isn't there. The large empty space in the middle of the robot was designed to accomodate the Quantapoint sensor. The smaller plates on the front and back of Groundhog were used for sensor mounting. This is the configuration of the robot when it went to the Bruceton Safety mine for its first field trial.

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