Students demo intelligent car designs - Embedded.com

Students demo intelligent car designs

At the recent Embedded World in Nuremberg, three universities – the University of Applied Sciences Landshut, the University of Applied Sciences Deggendorf and the Czech Technology University –  ran demonstrations which showed the implementation of the Freescale technology.

The demo was part of the Freescale Cup, a global competition where student teams build, program and race an intelligent model car around a track. The fastest car to complete the track without derailing wins the race.

More than 200 undergraduate students from the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Poland, Romania, Russia and Slovakia signed up to participate as teams in the EMEA Freescale Cup.

This challenge offers a collaborative, competitive and hands-on way for students to learn about embedded systems engineering and how to apply it in a real-world application.

In addition to participating in the competition, students will get the opportunity to share their work and network with faculty, Freescale industry partners and customers, and Freescale engineers.

The design of the intelligent car requires embedded software programming and basic circuit creation using Freescale parts included in the entry kit and then students create motor control hardware and software to propel and steer their intelligent car. The students have to interface with a camera to navigate the car through the race course by following the guideline

The standard intelligent car components are the model car kit, servo, electric motors, a battery with a charger and a quick start guide.

The chassis is a 1/18 scale model while propulsion is supplied by 7.2V DC motors (one for each rear wheel). Steering is via a servo motor while the control system is based on a Freescale Qorivva MPC5604B automotive microcontroller and the motor control via the company' analog board. An  MC33931 H-Bridge is included and guidance is based on a CMOS camera.

Freescale Cup car kits were dsitriuted last October and the European Final will be on April 3-4, 2012, when more than 90 students from the 15 enrolled schools will race for the EMEA Freescale Cup title.

The event will be hosted by the Czech Technology University and the students will have a chance to demonstrate what they have learned during two qualification rounds where each car has to run its best lap time over two consecutive laps. The 112 sq/m racetrack includes challenging sections with speed bumps, an intersection, a hill, a tunnel and zigzag curves.

The winning team will be invited to attend the Freescale Technology Forum (FTF) in San Antonio and race their vehicle against finalists from other regions.

Enrollments for the 2012-13 season of the Freescale Cup will start in April.

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Anyone interested in automotive technology should plan to attend the keynote at DESIGN West on Wednesday March 28 in the at the San Jose Civic Auditorium  at 9.30am.  JB Straubel, the Chief Technical Officer (CTO) and part of the founding team Tesla Motors Inc, will be describing how innovation and an entrepreneurial approach can be combined. At Tesla Motors he oversees the technical and engineering design of the vehicles and has responsibility for new technology evaluation, R&D, technical diligence review of key vendors and partners, IP, and systems validation testing.

More information available at UBMDesign.com  

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