WildFollower

Inspiration

Mother earth and nature are beautiful, and it is a pity we do not record every little moment of it. Is difficult to record or take photos of animals in the wild, this project solves this problem.

What it does?

With the help of a thermal camera, the Wild Follower detects the being and aims to it. It also takes photos when the animal is centred.

How we built it

Arduino with two servos for the articulate (in x and y axis) component. Connected to a thermal camera and to a Raspberry Pi 3. The Arduino process the thermal image and gets the hottest pixel of it. This process has to be fast and light because of the Arduino processing capacity. That Raspberry takes a photo when the heatest element is in the center of the thermal camera and sends the resulting image to your computer via ssh

Challenges we ran into

  • Soldering the pins of the thermal camera (Thanks to Eric)
  • Finding the way to connect the Raspberry to the computer (Thanks Toni, Eric and Xavi)
  • Connection end to end, camera to the laptop through the Raspberry.
  • Syncing the servos with the thermal camera.
  • Building the cardboard structure.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • Connecting 6 hardware component together and make them work
  • Work in parallel and synced in the project
  • Learning communication protocols between very different hardware components (UART, SSH and SCP, I2C)

What we learned

  • How to fight against a Raspberry
  • Communication protocols between hardware
  • Servos control
  • Thermal images recognition
  • Connect webcap with Raspberry: Trigger, take a photo and send it to another element.

What's next for WildFollower

Attach the camera to the servo structure (the current one is not that tough), recording videos, stream videos, notify when something is detected, assemble everything to one single component instead of four and anything you could imagine ;)

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