GUPPIE, or Glider for Underwater Problem-solving and Promotion of Interest in Engineering, is a small underwater glider robot (See Underwater Gliders) developed to teach middle school and high school students about robotics in a fun, hands on, application based program. GUPPIE is made from simple materials as well as some 3D printed parts, a tool becoming increasingly popular in classrooms today.
Being developed through many years, GUPPIE has gone through a few different versions to bring you the glider it is today. As you might imagine, building electronics that need to go underwater is a challenge! As long as the proper steps are taken to ensure GUPPIE is water-tight, a trip to the pool to swim with robots is always exciting.
It is a great platform to discuss other topics like biodiversity, the environment and ecology, water quality, and more.
GUPPIE has gone through years of testing and revisions, and has gone through many versions. Mini-GUPPIE was implemented for summer 2016 and utilizes a water bottle as the water-tight container. Students assemble the electronics to fit inside, design their own fin shapes, and trim them with weights on the outside.
Our larger GUPPIE design gives students more room to explore. Students cut an acrylic tube to length and assemble the electronics and 3d printed parts. We have attached a video camera to GUPPIE to record pool tests. Other payloads like sensors could easily be included.
This year we have revised our Mini-GUPPIE using feedback from our programs to be more user-friendly.