Session 3- International Space Station!


Today we are going to Lower Earth Orbit to the International Space Station!!!!Today’s build is “Technical” (Using technic blocks to build a robotics arm). Our first video takes us to life on the ISS.

Intro to the Space Station-

Did you see all the different modules that are put together to make the ISS.

Look at all the different countries that work together to make it happen. Can you figure out all the countries by their flag?

United States, Russia, Canada, Japan
Europe : Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland,United Kingdom.

It takes teams to make something as complicated as the ISS work, just like it takes teams to make our Lego engineering work.


Let’s learn more about the Canadarm2- It first was developed to help with the space ship

This is Candaram 1

This is Canadarm2 that is on the ISS. Let’s look inside the ISS and see how the astronauts control the arm

Intro to Robotic arm on ISS:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zbwV0fs5-xU

Write on white board:

What are the features of the robotic arm on the International Space Station?

  1. Longer than the space shuttle arm
  2. Extra Joints
  3. On a mobile base system
  4. Can move like an inch worm moving its base of attachment
  5. Elbow attachment that can go 360 degrees 
    1. What do we mean when we say 360 degrees?
      1. Draw a circle and divide it out into 90 degree segment
      2. Have every one stand up and do a 360, 180, 180, 90, 90,90,90,90
  6. Shoulder can move in 3 direction

Here is our challenge for today:

We are going to design and build a robotic arm to help the astronauts on the ISS capture their re-supply pod.  

To do this we are going to use technic Legos and the Power Function Pack.

We are going to use Lego Diagrams to figure out how to build an arm. Just like cooking there is a recipe, for Lego Engineering the recipe is the Lego Part list.

  In these Lego diagrams there are no words.  You just look at it and figure out how to build it.  There are three level of arms you can build, start with the first though.  Also, the color of the Lego piece does not need to match what is in the diagram, just the size or length.  In addition, we may not have all the pieces so you may need to improvise some.  

Look closely at the supply list, start naming the pieces and finding them with a partner or team.

  • technic beams one of each 9, 7, 3
  • Large L beam
  • Angle beam 9
  • 3 T beam
  • 4 black friction pegs
  • 2 grey no-friction pegs
  • 2 – 3 long blue -collar pegs
  • 2 – 3 long axels, can be longer
  • 2 – 3 long axels with a stopper, can be longer
  • One half bushing, one whole bushing
  • Lego Rubber band
  • 2 pulley wheels
  • 2 – 16 tooth gears

While you start to build it, we only have so many power function packs, so you may need to build it without the pack.

Start with looking closely at how the 9 long beam is connected to the power function pack.  Place the two black friction pegs in to the 9 long 

Now look at the dark grey T piece.  See how the 3 long collar pegs are used to connect it to the 9 long? Connect it accordingly.  Place the lime green 3 beam.

Now connect the ends of the 9 long angle beam to the T piece.  The picture shows a 3 long stopper axel, but you can use any short length axel and place a bushing on the end if you can’t find a stopper axel.  

Now place the gears on the other side of the axels holding the angle beams. They should MESH, so the teeth are interlocked.

Double up the pulley wheels.  Place the 3 long axel through the back.  Use a full bushing to keep it in place. Place the other 3 long axel in the second hole and secure with a half bushing.  Place the rubber band.  

Now make the arm that moves the angle beams by connecting the large L beam to the 7 long beam, place the grey non-friction pegs as shown. Place two black friction pegs in the L beam as shown.

So now that you have built your first robotic arm, test it!  What do you want to improve?  Re-design and take a picture.

You may need to extend the “arm” with an additional technic beam to give the rubber band for tension.

When you are ready go one to the second or third arms.  

Arm 1

Arm 2

Arm 3

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