Saturday, March 5, 2011

Pressure Problems

Calibrating the ROV depth sensor has been a continuous event throughout our trip. Our excursion to the Mdina cisterns began with an investigation of the local gas station air compressors. Before getting there we were discussing all the different units of pressure that we might run into to preempt converting units if we had limited access to the air compressors. It turns out the common units were lbf/in^2 and Bar. The first gas station had a free air compressor to use but the pressure was no more than ~20 psi but there was no pressure gage to know for sure so we moved on. We found another gas station nearby with an adequate air compressor and the gas attendant was very excited to help us when he saw our robot. The pressure from the air compressor was not high enough and after briefly explaining the problem to the gas attendant he began brainstorming with us on how to solve the problem given the limited equipment we had to work with. After clarifying the problem, he left and came back shortly with a small plastic cap and he began using a knife to take out some of the plastic so it would fit better on the air compressor nozzle. Billy and I fastened the make-shift pressure adapter onto the nozzle and we were able to get the correct pressure to calibrate the ROV. We never knew how exciting it would be to calibrate the ROV (again) and gain so much knowledge about engineering and culture in Malta. Learn by doing at its best!

Chuck Norris jokes are good but Timmy jokes are better simply because Timmy is the subject.

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