Hello Society of Robots! I've come to what looks like your pretty awesome community for help on a mechanical engineering project. My name is Leo, I've just been assigned my first robotics project, and I'm a little overwhelmed. Having dealt in only mindstorms and basic arduino coding before, my experience is unfortunately lacking in robotics so far.
Our project requires an autonomous vehicle to travel along raised platform with gentle curves of unknown location and then turn around at the end and retrace it's steps, all without falling off. The platform is about 1 foot wide, and there's to be no "clamping along the sides"--the robot must be guided through sensors or other methods.
I've done a little research on sensors so far, but does any obvious solutions come to your more cultivated mind? Would it be better to use a bang-bang approach, correcting only when the robot approaches the edge, or a more proportional control system such as keeping the edges equidistant from the robot's centre? How might the robot distinguish the end of the track as opposed to the curves?
Thanks in advance for your help! Regards,