Robotic beer launching fridge

This robotic beer launching fridge is one of those ultimate projects that you are guaranteed to see posted all over the internet today. Robots, beer, the possibility of maiming innocent bystanders… what’s not to love? I’d be lying if I said my mechanical engineering friends and I weren’t contemplating this at many points during college. Kudos to John W. Cornwell of Duke for actually pulling it off. The mini-fridge has three servos: one to elevate beer from the 10 can magazine, one to rotate the turntable, and one for cocking. Spring power is used to catapult the beer across the room. The brains of the system is an ATMega8535 and 3 intelligent H-bridges. It’s controlled by an adapted key-less entry system. It looks like they’ve wisely placed it pointing away from the tv, but I don’t know if referring to your apartment as the “man-pit” is nearly as smart. Check out some of John’s other projects: the Mentos booby-trap and the touch activated paintball gun.

[via Dirk]

13 thoughts on “Robotic beer launching fridge

  1. My design was more of a pneumatic cannon, the original prototype only shot 3 feet. Lack of time, funds, and ambition prevented the building of the second version. John’s Beer Launcher is everything Eliot and I aspired to build but just never did. Yes, this is Eliot mechanical engineering friend. My hat is off to you John.

  2. Very impressive. Wonder if there’s a bottle version out there. I’m thinking a direct mod of this for bottles would have center of mass issues due to so many different shapes and sizes though.
    Maybe a pneumatic launcher for plastic 20ozs… for those premixed jack and cokes.

  3. I’m guessing it would work for soda; beer cans are 12 ozs, no? Overall a very cool hack. It’s the kind of parlor trick that you can show off to all your friends but doesn’t have a ton of use, like trick shot pool or card tricks :P i give this one a huge thumbs-up though.

    glad to see our astute students of Duke are putting their time to good use

  4. Hello

    PLC is the solution!

    Is it possible to obtain the design blueprints for this “Launcher” (kudos given) so I could input design variations??
    I am thinking “bar codes” (customization) for every bash that you might hold. for a given night (or day) you can “enable” guests to receive “refreshments” wherever they era on your premises!… think outside the tree trunk!!
    … remember 3 flys in our beer is OK!

    Cheers, max

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