Monday, January 31, 2011

Pneumatic control for NXT

On my regular visits to website, to seek for new developments, I found today a new product on the go, in their "Coming Soon ..." section.

Yes, a pneumatic control device for NXT!

Mindsensors commercializes several RC servo kits to use with NXT, for long. But this is going to be a Servo Operated Pneumatic Valve to be controlled from NXT using their new NXT Servo controller (NXTServo-v2).
The kit will include the valve, servo and necessary hardware and instructions to assemble the valve. When compared to other mindsensors servo kits, it is not much more than the RC servo with a specific mounting plate that allows to fix one pneumatic valve, and a special horn plate designed to pair with the valve lever movements.
It is however not indicated when the new kit will become commercially available.

It is not yet the integrated PF electro-valves, that I keep dreaming with... nor nothing we can't build with LEGO Technic discrete parts, but still an interesting new development for those willing to integrate MINDSTORMS and pneumatics!


blakbird said...

I wonder if it will be simply "on/off", or if you will able to apply a proportional amount of movement. Small movements of the valve can, for example, allow you to lower a boom slowly. I can envision a pre-programmed pneumatic excavator that repeats a series of choreographed digging motions at a convention, for instance.

TechnicBRICKs said...

As with other servos, you should be able to set proportional control, setting its speed and position.

Together with the respective NXT-G block, the NXTServo controller is the element that provides this type of control.

Alex said...

It is very interesting. However disappointing not having an integrated PF Pneumatic auto-valve at this point. I am personally not a fan of Mindstorms and it is not nice when I feel like "pushed" to move towards Mindstorms to add new functions to my models.

Al said...

I like the idea of pre-programming it so a heavy load is prevented from coming down too fast, with a servo such as this it should be possible. And it's small too. What I reaaly want (along with longer pneumatics!) is a PF servo that could be used in this way, or for many other things like steering or changing gears. Here we can now see (assuming it works) that a small servo is capable of such precise and powerful movements.

Sam Huang said...

RC servo is to position its output arm to a position that exactly corresponds with the movement of the corresponding stick, switch or slider on the transmitter. RC servo is controlled by sending them a pulse of variable width. It parts very useful in toys.

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