Roboarm

A 5 tethered robotic arm was built using transparent perspex for its frame and stripped motors from old TV antennas and children toys, emphasizing re-usability and sustainability.

Apart from the gripper motor, every other motor is capable of 360 degrees angular movement if needed. It is controlled using a novel method of light emission from a computer screen. The light emitted is picked up by a sensor array, attached to the screen,made up of Light Dependent Resistors(LDRs). This method totally bypasses the USB port or any need to program it.

The robotic arm is the first step in an iterative process whose intended end is a cheap, indigenous locally sourced robotic arm kit to be used for educational purposes.

The total cost of roboarm is 7930 Naira = 36 Euros (Approximate value based on rate 1 Euro = 221 Naira).

Roboarm can be used to introduce the following concepts to students: Mechanics, Electronics, Computer programming, Sustainability. The current model can be built from scratch also helping to convey do-it-yourself (DIY) skills to the children.

The robotic arm emerged as the only African entry and Winner in the African Robotic Network (AFRON) 2012 "10 Dollar Robot Design Challenge".

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