What is the most efficient way to recharge air tanks


In between matches (if I don’t have a lot of time), what is the most efficient legal way to fill all of the air tanks on my robot.


If you do not have an on-board compressor, train up your pit crew members to know how to operate that and connect which tubes to which, open which valves and close which ones.

For an on-board compressor, it should just pump automatically.

Note: The way my team has done this, we always had to enable the robot.


There is exactly one legal way to recharge your air tanks: using the one compressor on-board your robot under control of the roboRIO. I’d suggest a new battery before and after if possible.

You must have an on-board compressor this year (if you’re doing pneumatics), and it is the only legal source of robot air.


Not an option, you need to use the onboard compressor this year. Your only option is to charge your tanks with that.


This was last year for Power Up when we did not have the weight ability to hold the compressor. It was 3-4 lbs. How light is yours?


You may only use the compressor when controlled from the RIO and a PCM or relay. If you anticipate filling the air tanks between matches with little time to waste, you will want to have your programmers set up at least one operating mode (possibly “test” mode) so that when you enter it, the compressor automatically comes on (and, of course, shuts off when full).


There has been only one legal way to pressurize your pneumatics and that is with the one legal compressor under RoboRio (or previously CRio or all the way back to the IFI controller). It did not matter if the compressor was on board or off, the rules specified it had to be under control of the control system. This year (2019) the off board compressor has been eliminated as a legal source of pressure.


Could you power the compressor off a battery that is on your robot cart and not necessarily plugged in to your robot? IE via a battery power pole to small Anderson connector?


No. The compressor needs to be controlled by the pcm and may not be hooked up directly to a battery.


Emphasis mine. As mentioned above, the compressor must also be powered by the PCM.


The most efficient way is to only have one small air tank on your robot. This requires careful robot design, minimizing air use.

We’ve been using this technique for years, it takes well under a minute to refill “all the tanks” on our robots. Easy to do before leaving the pits for a match, while doing the operation check of the robot.