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Browsing: 1459 times print

Date:2017-11-10
Bracket:2017 NCYU News
Department:ncyu

Winning team Jumbo Tire NCYU Develops Field Robots to Assist Farming
  "Field Robot Event," the annual event in the bio-mechatronics circle, has now entered the tenth year. Every year all participating teams from across the island gather to battle with their brand child after nearly a year of hard work. Packed with the strength of top-three winning teams from last year’s event, NCYU’s aptly-named team “Jumbo Tire,” now instructed by Wen-luh Huang, chair of Energy and Sensor Center of College of Science and Engineering, CW Young, and De-Ching Tseng, Associate Professors of Department of Biomechatronic Engineering, claimed third place in 2017’s Field Robot Event.

  The team was headed by last year’s prize winner Shu-Yu Yang, with his juniors Yen-Ru Huang, Yi-Zheng Wu, and Zhe-Yi Li as team mates. Yang said, with the advancement of technology, the purpose of field robots are no longer just to assist farmers in the field, but to be able to handle various tasks in different environments by machine vision and image recognition combining means of electromechanical integration and computer programming. Therefore, the rules of event change slightly and become more difficult each year.

  According to Yang, in order for the robots to tackle different complex terrains, the team needs to conceive possible scenarios and test repeatedly in simulated fields to find ways for improvement from mistakes. The easiest and least expensive way to roll over the edge of rice paddies came to mind– using big tires, which also gives birth to the name of the team.

  Based on prior experiences, the NCYU’s robot team made many changes to the tire, from the 10-inch moving truck tire to tractor tire to even bicycle tire to the eventual jumbo tire robot. With the help of the sensor, the robot can find its target and water crops with precision, pick out a red apple out of three, and deliver it across the slope of a hill and a series of S curves of a road. All these tasks can only be accomplished with the help of engineering mathematics, regression analysis and PID controller to pass the S curves stably to the designated location.

  Yi-Zhen Wu said that everyone is exhilarated to win the competition from all the outstanding teams in Taiwan. But what is more pleasing is for people to join together because of the same interest and goal that pushed them to work through days and nights and constant quarrels due to clash of opinions. They have not only developed the ability to solve problems but gained invaluable experience from the event. This is more important than winning prize.

  Wen-Luh Huang, the instructor of the team, said that the competition was unexpectedly changed to indoor field due to bad weather and the scale of the contest was also modified. Besides, it was not possible to practice in the event field before the competition, putting to the test the teams’ capability of programming and adaptability. Under such circumstances, it is arguably not easy to stand out from the competitors and the winning team truly deserves more praise and encouragement.

  Wen-Luh Huang emphasized that the problem of aging population in rural areas is becoming more and more serious. He hopes that by means of automation and the research of mechanization technology, farmers’ burden can be relieved. The future of field robots must be customizable and also be able to meet the needs of different agricultural environments and crops.
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