Terabee Sensors for Robot Alignment

During the 2019 season, the Zebracorns received some distance sensors from Terabee which we have been experimenting with throughout the previous competition season. This whitepaper discusses the alignment algorithms that we developed using the Terabee sensors and how successful they were for the 2019 game.

zebrabee_2019.pdf (3.8 MB)


The paper indicates some of these algorithms you didn’t try on your competition bot and the videos are from your practice field pieces. It sounds like you used the multiflex on the rocket cargo alignment and the hatch ports. Is that correct? Did you use these all season?

Did you experience any issues with these sensors on polycarb (e.g. were you dependent on the opaque portions of the field elements)?

We had considered these last season, but ended up going with something we were more familiar with since we have had problems with some sensors not working great with the actual field elements in the past (polycarb and diamond plate both have some potential issues with certain sensors).


As with most IR sensors, you are dependent on the field elements being somewhat opaque (it’s highly dependent on the sensors, the distances involved, and the surfaces). We found the Terabee Sensors to be robust on the field rockets due to the vinyl coating they had and we’d happily use them again. Beyond that, we tested them with polycarbonate in our lab and they worked shockingly well.

The main issue that kept us from using these during events was actually our design choices for our chassis and how we were resolving other problems we were having with mounting mechanisms. In particular, we did not account for the multiflex cables and should have made our mounting solution more robust for routing them… we have a small collection of broken cables now unfortunately.