Software apps and online services
Hand tools and fabrication machines
Covid-19 has spread all across the world just within a half-year after its first case was identified in December 2019. It is undeniable that this pandemic has forced us to quickly adapt to the ‘new norms’ as a precaution and prevention approach to reduce its spread. One of the new norms is to practice maintaining social distancing with others and recommended to avoid a crowded place or high-risk area of infection.
Medical experts predicted that the pandemic will not disappear anytime soon and could last off and on for one or two years which lead to concern how long the front line team can restrain before being pushed to their breaking point. That can lead to more medical errors, substance abuse or self-harm. Therefore, there is a growing need for the reliable robotic solution to reduce the burden of the front liner team and assist in a task which is restricted because of this pandemic.
The combination of the Internet of Things (IoT) and robotic application can be used to avoid the spreading of Covid-19. The IoT robot assistance widely can be used to assist our front-liner to fight COVID-19 such as cleaning or disinfect the high-risk area and delivery medicine to COVID-19 patient. Besides, with the IoT application also enable remote workers in manufacturers to monitor and control their device through internet communication.Project Description
We aim to create the simplest and easier IoT robotic application for the beginner and school student. There is 2 main part involved in this project, remote control and also the controlled robot.
Blynk application will be used as an IoT platform and interface for the robot remote control. The apps can be installed in a smartphone or in a computer (using Android Emulator). Also, there will be 2 types of controller mode which is through a joystick widget or keypad button widget.
The main part for the robot is NodeMCU V2 with L293D motor shield. NodeMCU is an open-source firmware and simplest IoT development kit with an affordable price. It is the heart of the robot which manages internet communication between the Blynk and the robot through a wifi connection. Besides, the L293 motor shield was selected as it compatible (pin configuration and size) with NodeMCU V2 model. Motor driver needed to provide enough power for the motor to move. Direct power from the NodeMCU pin alone is not enough to drive the motor and can lead to microcontroller damage due to out limit of current supply.Robot Parts
1.Search and install “Blynk” application (Choose Options A or Option B):
A.Smartphone: Go to PlayStore/Apps Store and search Blynk
B.Computer: Install the LDPlayer and then install the Blynk App through Aptoid platform.
2.Create New Blynk Account:
3.Create a new Blynk project:
4.For Analog Controller Setup:
5.For Keypad Controller Setup (Optional):
1. Go to the Arduino website to download the software:
2. Select the suitable for the installer environment, in my case I will download the windows installer:
3. Click “just download” to download the installer:
4. Install the Arduino IDE:
Install the driver:
1. There is 2 version of NODE MCU with difference USB interface, download the driver based on the board version you use (Refer Software apps and online services section to download).
Install ESP8266 Board on Arduino IDE:
1. Open the Arduino IDE, go to File and click Preferences.
2. Copy and paste the link into the Additional Board URL Section and click ok.
3. Then, go to Tools > Board, click Board Manager.
4. Search ESP8266 and install the package, after installation finish click close.
5. Finally change the board configuration to NodeMCU 1.0 (ESP-12E Module).
1. Open the IDE and click to the "Sketch" menu and then Include Library > Manage Libraries.
2. Search for “Blynk” library and click “Install”. Once the installation finishes, click the close button.
3. Now can check the new library available in the Sketch > Include Library menu.
1. Open the Arduino IDE, you can write your code or directly open the example code provided.
2. Then, select NodeMCU 1.0 (ESP-12E Module) and port COM number for the board. You can check the board COM port at the device manager panel.
To check your board COM port (in my case, COM 5 for CP2102 driver):
3. Before uploading the code to the board, there are several setting need to be done:
4. Click the Upload icon at the menu panel to compile and upload the code to the board. Then wait for program uploading and Done!
1. Besides manually creating the controller app, Blynk also enables a user to directly clone the project using the QR code.
2. Follow the instruction below to scan the QR code and finish!
1. Stable internet connection required for the robot and controller communication.
2. Required basic understanding of Arduino and C/C++ language.Summary
1. In this project, we have developed an easier and simplest IoT robot to fostering the interest of the student regarding the robotic and IoT application.
2. Students also will learn a basic of robotic design and Blynk programming structure.
3. Blynk apps are one of the simplest and user-friendly IoT platforms suitable for beginner to develop rapid-prototyping IoT projects.
4. IoT platform enables remote connectivity which beneficial to reduce close contact and potentially can be implemented in online competition.