05 | june | 2021
Sometimes the best way to understand how something works is to model it. 3D modeling software gets the job done in silico, and sometimes that’s enough. But to really get into the designer’s head, by running a physical model, like this quarter scale RC controlled Perseverance rover, is a great way to go.
If you’re looking for cutting edge technology or a revolutionary design, this build probably won’t light your fire. But a closer look will not only show great details on how JPL designs robots that can work on Mars, but also great design and 3D printing advice. [Dejan]The modeling process began with the 3D renderings of Perseverance available on the NASA website, which entered SolidWorks through Blender. [Dejan] intended to capture every detail of the rover, even those that ended up just for the look. But there’s a lot of functionality, too – the undercarriage looks and operates exactly like the six-wheeled twin-bogie design used on Perseverance, as well as Curiosity before it. This revealed an interesting fact that we hadn’t realized before – that the hull is suspended from a single pivot point on each side, while a linkage across the deck both prevents the body from rotating and provides a differential control of the drive bogies on each side of the rover.
The video below shows both the impressive amount of 3D printing required to make all of the model’s parts as well as the assembly process involved. It also shows the model controlled by Arduino piloted by radio control. There is a lot to be learned from this model, and [Dejan]The craftsmanship here is also top notch. We’ve seen such builds from him before, like this 3D printed SCARA arm, CNC hot wire foam cutter, and automated wire bender.
continue reading “Perseverance Rover’s 3D printed scale model looks as complicated as the real one”