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Designing a Robot for Leak Detection in Natural Gas Pipes

Module Learning Outcomes

The following module learning outcomes and professional body learning outcomes are tested in this assessment:

? Apply detailed knowledge of sensors and actuators, and their signal conditioning and driving circuits for appropriate selection for a mechatronic product

You have been asked to design a robot that can travel within natural gas pipes of diameter 1m, for lengths up to 10km and for durations of 3 days. The aim of the robot is to check for leaks or cracks, to characterize the size and nature of these cracks, and to record and transmit their location. Provide a detailed description of the nature and type of both sensors and actuators that would be required for such a vehicle. You can assume that the vehicle will have a mass of no more than 200kg.

Your response should discuss considerations such as power budget and speed requirements, as well as other relevant considerations that may be important in this particular application, such as power-to-weight ratio for motors, for example. You should also demonstrate familiarity with operational requirements for the robot, such as the operating temperature in the pipe, the local pressure and nature of any gas in the pipe, the effect of water ingress or humidity and possible

obstacles or joints that might be encountered.The assignment should aim for no more than approximately 1200 words (±10%), and the use of diagrams to convey information is encouraged. The word limit does not include references or figure captions, but does include words in tables. The description should be clearly structured, so the use of headings and sub-headings is desirable.

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