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Autonomous Vehicle Systems  

This is a new course working with similar technology as in the Industrial UAV Systems course, but adding navigation programming as a primary class topic to teach students how autonomous vehicles can be developed for industry application.

This course is designed for those looking to know more about the control systems and challenges behind shop robots, self driving cars and similar vehicles. Autonomous vehicles in factories and public roadways appear to be an inevitability and we want to get a jump on this technology and start teaching students now so they can get a leg up on what’s needed to operate and maintain these units in the future.

Our goal in class is to have each student retrofit an existing RC vehicle with all the electronics and code to navigate various test tracks without user interaction, as well as meet certain design goals such as maintaining speed and driving in formation. Each class day will hold various challenges for students to overcome, which will then culminate in an end of course practical skills exam entailing navigation of an advanced test track with several obstacles and objectives.

Prerequisites - This course is entry level and no experience is required but having some Arduino C++ programming experience and the drive to learn would be helpful. If you're very new to this, try watching some youtube videos and other information sources before class.

Check out this series from Jeremy Blum on Arduino Basics:
Getting Acquainted with Arduino

Topics Include:

  • Sensor capabilities
  • Radio Control Technology
  • RF Video Transmission Technology
  • Brushless Motor Control
  • C++ Functions
  • Obstacle Avoidance
  • Threat assessment
  • Sensor placement
  • Shock awareness
  • Control Systems – PID control and other
  • Control loop latency
  • Dynamic filtering
  • I2C communication
  • Power requirements
  • Soldering
  • Programming microcontrollers
  • Basic Electronics
  • Levels of Automation
  • Augmented Automation


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