IPS and Darrick Wood School updates on their Engineering Education Scheme 2018 project – the implementation of drones within a café environment to serve customers their orders.
The Engineering Education Scheme, run by EDT is a project that puts together students interested in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) with local companies to work on challenges that put those skills to the test.
IPS this year are working with Darrick Wood School. Since our last website update (click here to view article) the team; Peter, Hugh, Holly, and Nadia have visited Cambridge to gain access to machinery to create visual drone tests. They have also revisited their IPS Mentors, at Northbank House on the 9th March (National Apprenticeship week) to go through the project and research what next steps to take.
They are now six months into the project, and they are into the swing of researching and manufacturing the drone. Since December’s report, a lot has been achieved, but there is still a lot to be done to finish in time for the presentation in May.
Team member Peter spoke to IPS about their achievements so far.
We have done extensive work on the frame and body of the drone in addition to its respective hardware, a Raspberry Pi core. This digital centre dedicated to the drone’s movement and co-ordination has received significant improvements from Hugh. December saw the implementation stage of coding ensuring foundations were being laid securing a stable development in the coming months.
Nadia has spent her time carefully planning, designing and creating the frame for the drone – using digital modelling software and could create an accurate and precise representation of the drone’s design while utilising our time at the Cambridge site to build an early model using lightweight materials. This experience allowed us to formulate rough ideas as to the dimensions of the drone.
Holly has used the past few months to research the limits and boundaries for drone delivery once in service.
Using the categorisation of many common food items and their relative weight, we selected appropriate motors and blade sizes to compensate for the subsequent downward forces due to gravity. This has acted as an opportunity in which we can acknowledge the pre-existing limits of drone technology while trying to create a balance which will allow for an efficient and effective product.
I have spent my time documenting the events of the past few months including our recent trip to the Cambridge site where we have made significant progress over two days using advanced resources and machinery made available to us for the first time. I have now begun work on the draft report which is to be handed in for assessment within the final few weeks of the scheme – I hope to use this time to gain a head start on the report which will increase its quality and depth.
Our biggest challenge remains our time constraints. With these remaining few months we remain fully focussed.
We wish the team good luck, and we want to wish them all the best in completing their project before the presentation day at the University of Kent in Canterbury on the 3rd May.