THIS TUTORIAL IS STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION!!!!
Introduction

The scoring system is comprised of a transponder board and 4 scoring plates (2 of which are half-size for bipeds). There are two type of transponders, the original MINI RoboController-based one, and the new for 2011 micro-transponder:

  • The new micro-transponder is 1.1x1.3" with a mounting hole in two opposing corners, 0.10" in from each edge. Max height is approximately 1.2".
  • The original transponder board is 2.4"x2.4", with mounting holes in each of the four corners, 0.15" in from each edge. Max height of the board is the height of a TO-220 regulator, standing vertically. Weight is approximately 35g.

The following sections show how to setup your XBEE, and how to connect power and the scoring plates to the transponder.

Configuring Your XBEE
The XBEE setup is quite simple, set the parameters to:

  • ATBD = 5 (38400)
  • ATCH = C
  • ATID = 6200
  • ATMY = 6200 + ID (Your ID should be written on the board)
  • ATDL = 6201

Assembling Target Plates
A scoring plate is approximately 3.5"x3.5" piece of lexan, with FSR's attached, and each panel should weigh less than 30g. A small PCB is attached to the backside of the scoring panel, it is 1.5"x1.5". This PCB has mount holes in each of the four corners, 0.15" in from the edge (thus the 4 holes are on a 1.2"x1.2" square), or you can use servo tape or velcro on the lexan panel. NOTE: 2011 PCBs are larger, to avoid stress on FSRs.

Target panels ship as a kit, see the assembly tutorial here.

Connecting A Micro-Transponder
Powering the Transponder
There are two options for powering the new micro-transponders: either providing a regulated 5V power, or by connecting 7-14VDC and using the on-board regulator. Please note, if your power supply should dip, and the transponder resets, it will likely register as a hit (and possibly 2).

If you are using an AX-12 based robot, you can install a bioloid header and power directly off the Bioloid bus. NOTE: do not connect the signal wire of the bioloid bus!

Connecting Target Plates
You will need to connect your scoring plates to pins 0-3, order does not matter.


When a hit is transmitted over XBEE, several types of pulses are output. A 500ms pulse is sent out on pin 7, which is connected to the LED in the upper corner of the board (near the power plug), which gives a visual indicator of board functionality. A pulse is also output on SIGNAL that can be used to determine which panel was hit. The pulse is 50ms*Target panel #, for a pulse of 50-200ms in length.

Connecting A MINI-based Transponder
Powering the Transponder
The board will need power applied to the terminal blocks, I recommend 7-10VDC, although the board can handle 6-16V. The only approved modification to the board, is to remove the LM2940 regulator and terminal blocks, replacing them with a suitable 5V power supply. The board must still pass any tests after modifications. Also note, if your power supply should dip, and the transponder resets, it will likely register as a hit (and possibly 2).

Connecting Target Plates
You will need to connect your scoring plates to pins A0-A3 (PC0-PC3 on Rev C/D boards), order does not matter. So, on new boards, target panels would plug into the 4 orange pins shown below, the red pins are VCC. On older boards, there are 2 more rows of unused pins to the right side (it's a 8x3 header, not a 6x3).



When a hit is transmitted over XBEE, several types of pulses are output. A 500ms pulse is sent out on Digital 9 (PB1), which is connected to the LED in the upper corner of the board (near the power plug), which gives a visual indicator of board functionality. A pulse is also output on Digital 12 (PB4) that can be used to determine which panel was hit. The pulse on Digital 12 is 50ms*Target panel #, for a pulse of 50-200ms in length.

The user manual for Rev E boards can be found on the Vanadium Labs website. I've uploaded the user manual for the Rev C/D boards , so that you can see where to connect stuff. Unfortunately, due to an error in the Gerber file generation, the analog pins are unlabeled on the rev C/D boards.