Sensor for Power Cell Intake

We are planning to have an intake system that leads to our conveyor system. My lead mentor would like to know what kind of sensor we should use for the conveyor system. To keep ball spacing and prevent power cells from jamming. IE, photo eyes, or optical sensors? What name brands or types of sensors would you recommend?


Just guessing but you may be able to use the color sensor that came in the KOP.

In 2012 my alumni team used a proximity sensor to ensure the balls didn’t go past a certain point, but it’s also worth noting the balls that year were much less sticky. I’d also recommend taking a look at some of the Ri3D teams and how they handled this–iirc Team Capitol has a solid solution that lets them continuously intake without jamming up.

We bought a bunch of these guys for that purpose.

Not sure if they work well yet, but we will be doing some testing this week.

Yeah, I believe they used this sensor

Most of what I’ve seen involves using Infrared sensors. Usually IR Reflective Sensors, or beam break sensors (like the one @Lexeo linked). The two I have been looking at are the SHARP GP2Y0A21YK0F IR Reflective Analog Distance sensor, and some generic Infrared Photoelectric adjustable trigger distance digital sensors.
Here are the specific listings I have bought (but haven’t actually experimented with either yet).
SHARP Analog Sensor:
Photoelectric Digital Sensor:

For 3468, it sounds like we are planning on putting a sensor on each end of our conveyor system. The one at the intake will be used to detect a ball coming in and make sure it gets moved up enough for the next ball to come in, and the one at the top being used to stop any more from being taken in to keep any jamming from happening if the driver losses track.

That’s correct!

We were sent a couple of that sensor by Playing With Fusion and it was very easy to integrate and worked well. We used it in a simplistic way (binary y/n is the ball in the path of the sensor) so could have gotten away with a simpler sensor in that location. You can do even cooler stuff with with the ToF sensor though like seeing how deep a ball is sitting in your conveyor path.

Did you have any issues with interference on CAN or did you use any shielding to prevent interference? Our team has is considering using them but we don’t know if using longer CAN wires would cause interference or if we would need to use shielding or something else to mitigate that.