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Wednesday, June 4

Monday, June 2

  1. page Brett A SFLOM edited ... We then took a gallon sized plastic bag and stuck the egg, which was inside the bubble wrap, i…
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    We then took a gallon sized plastic bag and stuck the egg, which was inside the bubble wrap, into the bag. The bag was then coated with paper towel for maximum comfort. Popsicle sticks were then taped to the side of the plastic bag. Two balloons were then taped to these popsicle sticks, to form a kind of parachute. We then taped pieces of paper between the balloons, as a sort of bridge, so that it could glide or give more air resistance. Our parachute descended slowly to the concrete ground, but there was not enough padding to keep the egg from cracking. Next time we should add more padding for the egg. Next time we could use some thrusters and more bubble wrap if they were provided.
    {bwa_dropvehiclereal.jpg} Figure 1: This is our incompleted drop vehicle
    Wiki 7: Robot HistoryRobot History: Wiki Entry 7
    Animatrons and movable machines have been mentioned for millenniums , however the word robot was not used until the early 1800´s. Around 3000 B.C. it was recorded that human figurines were used to strike the hour bells on water clocks. This was the first example of something mechanical performing a task. In 200 B.C. it was recorded that in Hellenic Egypt There were statues that could speak, gesture, and prophecy. It is not known if these records are true, but if they are, they are the first examples of robotics in the world. In 1557 Giovanni Torriani (An awesome name) made a robot to fetch bread from the store for his Emperor. In the 17th century, multiple advancements were made in the robotics field, but the 1900's was when robotics actually turned many heads.
    The term "robot" was first used in the play, R.U.R., or Rossum's Universal Robots. The play was about robots being made for work by men and then they attack the men. The word robot comes from the Czech word for of roboti, which means serf labor or hard work. The earliest robots, as we think of them, were invented in the 1950's. George C. Devol, an inventor from Louisville, Kentucky, made the Unimate, a reprogrammable manipulator. He attempted to sell it but to no avail. In the late 1960's Joseph Engleberger took Devol's patent and formed the company Unimation to produce and sell the robot. Because of his efforts i the field, Engleberger was proclaimed the "Father of Robotics." In 2003 it was shown just how far robotics had come because this was the year that, the two robots, Spirit and Opportunity, were landed on Mars successfully. For years to come these robots took pictures of Mars and analyzed the surface of Mars, before eventually dying because of dust storms.
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    Almost all of this information was gathered from:
    http://stanford.io/1lvzTvn
    Wiki 8: Programming RobotsProgramming Robots: Wiki Entry 8
    Motors are what make a robot move, in Mindstorms robot's cases, these are incased in plastic and hooked up via wire to the ports on the top of the robot. These motors are attached to parts like wheels and claws, which move according to what you programmed into the motors. These motors can allow you to move forward, backwards, do point turns, curve turns, drive in a square, and even go backward while turning. The challenges of using these motors is that sometimes they can be difficult to program, and it takes a lot of time. It is also frustrating because one single little degree or centimeter can mess up the whole program, and then it must be hunted down throughout the entire program.
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    would stop. {Bwa_wobot.jpg}
    {Bwa_wobot.jpg}

    Figure 1: This is a Mindstorms robot with an ultrasonic sensor attached
    {Bwa_ALL_the_sensors.jpg}
    Figure 2: These are all of the Mindstorms sensors, light sensor, touch sensor, ultrasonic sensor, and sound sensor
    Geology on Mars: Wiki Entry 9
    There are many ways a mineral or rock can be identified. When you pick up any little rock or mineral in the ground, do you think about what it could be, or what it's made of? You probably don't unless you're a geologist. Rocks and minerals are not only identified by color or luster however. Most of the other ways require other material though, so you can't just pick up a rock and identify it right away, yoju have to have the right equipment. One test used to determine what a mineral or rock is is called a streak test. It uses two unglazed porcelain tiiles, one black and one white. They can be other colors, but these two work best. The rock is then scratched onto the tiles to see what color they leave in powder form. Another kind of test is the hardness test. Using the hardness scale, a rock can be scratched until it is in the middle of two parts of the scale. Once this happens, it can be hypothesised how hard the rock/mineral is.
    {BWA_I_hate_work.jpg}
    Figure 1: This is an example of a streak test, where rocks are being scratched on a white porcelain tile to see their streak colors
    Curiosity is the name of the robot who has landed on Mars. It is powered by Uranium and was sent to Mars to sample rocks and minerals for signs of water.The robot using mechanical "arms" to scoop a desired bunch of minerals and rocks from the ground. The the robot would bring the sample inside of it for testing. The robot would conduct various tests on these rocks , and then a report would be sent to Geologists back at Earth. Essentially, Curiosity acts almost like a geologist, and in some ways Curiosity is better.So far Curiosity hasn't found anything groundbreaking, but traces of minerals that imply water have been found.
    {BWA_Curiosity.jpg}
    Figure 2: This is a picture of Curiosity with a worker

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  4. page Jillian R SFLOM edited ... Geologist use different experiments to conclude what different minerals make up a rock. One of…
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    Geologist use different experiments to conclude what different minerals make up a rock. One of the tests they use is using light refraction which is seeing what happens when the rock is put over text. Another test is UV light this is used because only certain rocks refract UV light. The way they do UV light testing is by taking a black light and shining it onto a rock and see if the rock shines a different color. One of the big tests is just observing color texture and shine then they check that against the characteristic of other minerals and try to find a mineral that has the same characteristics. The last way is by using chemical testing by putting acid or other chemicals on the rock or mineral and see if reacts and a certain way. These are just the tip of the iceberg in testing minerals and rocks.
    {j uv.jpg}
    The big reason for testing the geology on mars is to test for life forms. Many other rovers have traveled to mars but they were not as intricate as curiosity. It has tools on the outside collect rocks and minerals. On the outside it also has a a camera or geologist to make observations. Inside of the rover it has a laboratory to test the rocks and minerals. It sends the data from that back to earth so we can decipher different things about the geology of mars.
    {rover jr.jpg}
    http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/milestones.html
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultraviolet

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  6. page Elizabeth G SFLOM edited ... A sensor is a device that senses its surrounding through different senses, including sight, to…
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    A sensor is a device that senses its surrounding through different senses, including sight, touch, and sound. There are a couple of different types we have worked with, including a light sensor, a touch sensor, a sound sensor, and an ultrasonic sensor, as seen in figure 11. Each sensor I have worked with helps my robot in some way. If a robot is a task and can't travel on a certain surface, the light sensor helps it. When pointed at the ground, light sensors tell a robot what surface it should not travel on by recording the percentage of light on the surface it can travel on and the surface it can't. This is only possible if the two surfaces are different colors because the robot has to be programmed to know that a surface with a certain percentage of light cannot be traveled on. Ultrasonic sensors send out waves to determine whether there is an object blocking its path so it can it successfully perform the task assigned to it. Sound sensors help a robot because the robot can be programmed to do an action when it hears a sound. Touch sensors help a robot sense where objects are so if it need to perform an action with that certain object, it knows where it is.
    {eag_legomindstormrobot.jpg} Figure 10: This is a Lego Mindstorm Robot. {eag_legomindstormrobotsensor.jpg} Figure 11: This is an Lego Mindstorm ultrasonic sensor.
    How Can Minerals and Rocks be Identified?
    There are numerous different physical properties minerals can be distinguished by. Because minerals come in various different shapes, sizes, and color, scientists cannot use only one property to determine its identity. Two properties scientists use that go hand-in-hand are color and luster. In order to identify a mineral with these properties, you would have to observe the appearance of each sample and compare it to a list of observations of other minerals. Hardness is another property that can be utilized. An unknown material has to be scratch against a known material for its hardness to be identified. The material that is harder will leave a mark on the surface of the other. A streak test is another tool geologist use. When scratched against another surface, a mineral will leave the color of the mineral in its powder form. Each mineral's streak color varies as some minerals may have a streak color different from the outer color while others may have ones similar to it. Scientist use magnetism by hovering a magnet over minerals to see whether they have magnetic properties. Since a small percentage of minerals are magnetic, there is only a small number of minerals a magnetic mineral could be. In addition, the way light is refracted through a mineral may give some clue to what it is. To do this test, the mineral has to be placed onto black text on a white sheet of paper; for example, a textbook would work. Because some of them fluoresce, or absorb UV light and re-emit visible light, shining UV lights on minerals can help to identify a mineral. Not all minerals do this, which is why fluorescence is used to identify minerals. Some minerals react when they come in contact with common chemicals. When a strong acid is placed onto a mineral containing carbonate, bubbles will appear. The acid test gives us an idea of what the mineral might be because we know it contains carbonate. Learning the content of the mineral makes it that much easier to identify because only some minerals contain carbonate.
    {eag_streak.JPG} Figure 12: This image depicts a mineral next to its streak.
    NASA has sent a rover called Curiosity, which is currently travelling to Mars, to perform geology experiments on Mars. It does so by first drilling into the surface of Mars to collect powder from the rocks. This substance is then transported into two large chemistry laboratories inside the rover that is used for analyzing. These laboratories can uniquely determine its mineralogy, what minerals and chemical elements are present inside of it. The rover is similar to a geologist in a laboratory; it is the next best thing to sending a human astronaut to Mars. All this information is a crucial part of learning whether Mars was a habitable environment. The scientists have planned for the rover to explore Gale Crater and observe its rocks and minerals. If they were ever rivers on Mars, these rocks and minerals in Gale Crater could tell us many things about Mars. The rocks and mineral do suggest that they could have potentially been under water, which we associate with habitability.
    {eag_curiosityrover.jpg} Figure 13: This is a picture of Curiosity, the rover NASA sent to Mars.

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  8. page Jillian R SFLOM edited Search for Life on Mars (SLM) – Wiki Entry 1 ... to another causing an causingan imbalance of…
    Search for Life on Mars (SLM) – Wiki Entry 1
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    to another causing ancausingan imbalance of
    The way that we could use electricity on mars is by using current electricity power a rocket so the astronauts can stay alive. After that we can use to to mechanically move it on to mars . we could use static electricity to test the soil to see if it is positive or negative. Then we can use current to control the rover and go very in depth about look for life. Then use discharge to blast off and head back to earth.
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    http://www.romansrobots.com/our-courses/
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lego_Mindstorms_NXT
    SLM – Wiki Entry 9: Geology on Mars
    Geologist use different experiments to conclude what different minerals make up a rock. One of the tests they use is using light refraction which is seeing what happens when the rock is put over text. Another test is UV light this is used because only certain rocks refract UV light. The way they do UV light testing is by taking a black light and shining it onto a rock and see if the rock shines a different color. One of the big tests is just observing color texture and shine then they check that against the characteristic of other minerals and try to find a mineral that has the same characteristics. The last way is by using chemical testing by putting acid or other chemicals on the rock or mineral and see if reacts and a certain way. These are just the tip of the iceberg in testing minerals and rocks.
    {j uv.jpg}

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