With a simple set of tools: A microcontroller, a single servo and an electric motor, we created a remotely controlled platform for exploring any small body of water. The mcookie architecture allows us the flexibility to use multiple control methods (wifi, line of sight infrared, or Bluetooth) and use multiple sensor systems (passive infrared, temperature and humidity, accelerometer, etc.) that integrate with the microduino system.
The twin hull design was chosen to provide stability and ease of manufacture. The narrow hulls also provide the least amount The hulls were created in ABS plastic using an afinia 3D printer. Our design cycle from CAD model to hardware was less than 8 hours. Laser cutting was used to fabricate the remaining components.
Borrowing from the aerospace concept of the canard stabilizer, a forward-placed rudder design was chosen to save space and create the most balanced and efficient layout. The single supplied motor provided high torque but low rpm, so a 3D printed paddlewheel was designed to effectively propel our water drone. Two rigid sailfoils, one per hull, will provide extra speed and save energy when sailing perpendicular to the wind.