March 11th 2018
San Diego, CA
In following up with our last post, the team and I had our work cut out for us. After giving the epoxy plenty of time to dry, we met on Sunday with the arduous task of rewiring… all of Pegasus. As we explained last time, the DB25 is the vital connection point for the ROV; any and all signals between the ROV and us on the surface go through here. We had our work cut out for us: as the name implies, we had to solder 25 different joints. But that’s only the half of it; we also had to deal with joining old joints, and managing the seemingly endless rainbow array of wires. Here’s what Maddy has to say about our Sunday challenge:
“While Sundays are generally considered lazy days, this past Sunday our team was fired up to rewire Pegasus and watch our ROV come to life again. As Jordan mentioned in the last post, we had to call it quits on our last meeting to allow the epoxy to dry, but this meeting we spent hours soldering and rebuilding connections between the DB25 and all of Pegasus’ components. With the goal of getting Pegasus back in the water, we stayed persistent on the tedious task of soldering, which requires much more time and decision making than you would expect. We had to carefully decide where to cut the existing wires in order to make new connections. There’s a few ongoing lessons here: measure twice and cut once, work smarter and not harder, and take the time needed to finish a job correctly. We stayed true to these important lessons as we meticulously rebuilt the connections for the port, starboard, and vertical motors, port and starboard battery tubes, IMU sensors, light cubes, and tether. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a heat gun to secure the heat shrink over the soldering sites, so we weren’t able to power Pegasus up. It was still a very productive day, however, and hopefully these newly rewired connections to the DB25 will solve the issue the ROV has been having!”
From left to right: Lorenzo, Jordan, and Maddy all take turns soldering new connections
As it turns out, failure is the best teacher. As of right now, after all of our hard work, Pegasus is still not operational. We’re confident that we followed the directions, and worked to the best of abilities. However, some issues are unforeseeable. We’re still troubleshooting, and thanks to the engineers at OpenROV I’m confident that we’ll have Pegasus up and running in no time! Special thanks to Zack and Lorah for taking time to help me troubleshoot over the phone.
Don’t forget to check out Marine Science Day on Sunday March 18th at the Coastal and Marine Institute! Project Pegasus will be there alongside the Edwards Lab and the rest of the labs at CMIL to showcase our awesome projects!
That’s all for now, stay tuned for more.
-Baron von Urchin
Pike Spector is currently a Research Operations Specialist with Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary