Part of Unit: FIRST Robotics Power Distribution and Bench Test
Lesson Plan Overview / Details
In this section students will learn how to properly use an ammeter to check the current draw of a small DC motor.
- Class Period
- 57 Minutes
California Career and Technical Education Standards
- ED.D.D1.1 Understand the classification and use of various electronic components, symbols,...
- ED.D.D3.1 Analyze relationships between voltage, current, resistance, and power related to...
- ED.D.D3.3 Calculate, construct, measure, and interpret both AC and DC circuits.
- ED.D.D3.4 Use appropriate electronic instruments to analyze, repair, or measure electrical...
- ED.D.D3.5 Analyze and predict the effects of circuit conditions on the basis of measuremen...
- ED.D.D3.7 Understand how electrical control and protection devices are used in electrical ...
- ED.D.D3.8 Calculate loads, currents, and circuit-operating parameters.
California Academic Content Standards (Reinforced)
Objectives and Goals
- Students learn how to use a multimeter to find amperage
- Students learn about the different types of amperage measuring devices
- Students become familiar with the use of amperage clamp meters
- Students discover that motors draw varying current at different times in their use
Activities in this Lesson
- Anticipatory Set - Hooks / Set
Students copy down the day's objectives from the board and then turn their attention to the video screen. Students watch the Solar School House tutorial on the use of the multimeter to find amperage.
- multimeter demonstration tutorial [ Watch Video ] [ Download Original Video ] Students watch this tutorial for basic understanding of a multimeter. We use several different makes and models in our lab as well as various clamps and probes. A basic multimeter can be utilized for all of the testing needs of these activities, though a Fluke amperage clamp is nice as well.
Students test the motors leads for current. The multimeter needs to be configured for amperage. An amperage clamp meter can be used instead of breaking the wire connection between the motor and controller. Resources for clamp meters are below. Students use the Amperage Test Schematic (File Below) to record the amperage that is displayed on the meters display.
- Amperage Test Schematic [ Download ] This schematic is from the FIRST Robotics original 2010 competition wiring diagram with edits for input fields. Use this resource only as an example. There are many places on the bench test that can be tested (not just between the motor and controller). An original of this wiring diagram is found below. You can add sticky note wherever you want the students to take a measurement. You can then scan and copy this schematic (with blanks) and distribute to your students.
- 2010_Robot_Power_Distribution_RevA.pdf.pdf [ Download ] 2010 Robot Power Distribution Schematic
- Clamp URL [ Go to Site ] This is a great resource for sizing a Fluke amperage clamp meter for your own lab/ needs.
- 330shock.asp [ Go to Site ] Visit this link for a fun demo of the Fluke 337 amperage clamp meter
Students journal on what tools and procedures they used during the lab. The students then finish their KWL. Students find the KWL activity beneficial for connecting the dots. (KWL template provided below.)
- KWL.doc [ Download ] Students find the KWL activity beneficial for connecting the dots.
- Assessment Types:
- Journals, Demonstrations, Observations,
Visually check for understanding. Ask students questions that demonstrate understanding. Collect, inspect, and grade student notebooks/ journals.