In addition to the tasks completed in Performance Tests 1 and 2, the team was instructed to create code that would bring the caboose back to the gate, wait between the sensors for seven seconds, proceed through the gate, go down the slight incline, and stop smoothly at the starting dock. The code used can be found here. The team only tested the balsa wood design for the first run. First, the team fixed the code to make the “caboose pick up” as smooth as possible. They completed the first run and decided to compare the other three models (Reference AEV, ABS AEV, and Balsa Wood AEV) to compare the energy use between them.
Results and Analysis
The team only attempted the Final Performance Test one time and it was successful. Below in Figure 1 is the Power vs Time graph of the run. The total time was 52 seconds which was longer than the class average of 47.82 seconds. In addition, the total energy was 180.53 J which was not;e above the average of 226.38 J. The cost of the run for Team J’s AEV was $363,265 with a total cost of $532,675. These values were both below the class averages of $404,582 and $553,288. Overall, the final design was energy efficient and cost effective. The balsa wood design, as described in Performance Test 2, was the lightest weight design. It was significantly lighter than the Reference AEV. Because of this less energy was used, resulting in a successful run. The team ended up with a 97% overall on the project and they were chosen to compete in the AEV Showcase.
In Figure 2, all three models (The Reference AEV, The 3D Printed AEV, and the Balsa Wood AEV) are compared. There is a notable difference between the three models, especially at the end of the run. The Balsa Wood AEV took the least amount of time to complete the run at about 21 seconds while the ABS model finished at about 24 s. The Reference AEV was in between the two. This graph reinforces why the team chose the Balsa Wood Model because of its loser energy and lower time.
The balsa wood AEV was no doubt the right choice as the final design. It is lightweight, thus, using the least energy than any of the other designs produced and tested.