The life of a combat robot is all about the heat of the fight, and in that battle, when a major title is at stake, it could be the life of the robot’s batteries that make or break the championship.
Gabriel Barsi, a member of the RioBotz combat robot team at Pontifical Catholic University in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, knows first-hand the difference a battery can make. Their robot, Touro Maximus, took home the heavyweight world champion combat robot title this year.
“We’ve been trying to win this title every year since 2007,” Barsi said. “We went through different robot projects in order to achieve it. The winning bot this year [Touro Maximus], was originally designed and built in 2011.”
Barsi said RioBotz has been making changes and improvements throughout the years. One of those tweaks had to do with the botz’s life-force.
“We had a huge issue with batteries in Touro Maximus,” Barsi said. “We started out running it at 8S9P 4200mAh 45C and it wasn’t until 2013 when we finally got our internal components running smoothly that we realized that the robot could pull over 1600A peak.”
Barsi said that was just too much for the batteries the team was using.
“We lost packs every fight and assembling everything is a hassle, since we needed to connect so many batteries and make sure each one was charged properly,” Barsi explained.
Charging batteries between fights becomes an issue because teams only have 40 minutes to get prepared for the next round.
“We lost in 2013 mainly because our electronics were just a mess,” Barsi said. “We switched to MaxAmps because we needed better, more compact packs and – most importantly – packs that could take a hit or two and still perform to deliver all those amps.”
The team put in a bit of research and settled on the 150C packs. They ran them at 12S2P for the weapon and 6S2P for the drive. All of their battery packs were the 6S 22.2v 8000mAh.
“The most important thing, though, is that we ran an entire competition without losing a single pack,” Barsi said. “Every single fight, the packs came out in tact and our robot ran flawlessly. We saw spikes of almost 1600A on our telemetry – those spikes used to kill our old batteries.”
Barsi said the team gives some of the credit for their win to MaxAmps batteries.
“Overall, the entire team was happy with the change,” Barsi said. “We can safely say that these new battery packs played a major role in allowing us to win the world title.”
written by Jessica Else