CHEESEBORG

Project in collaboration with with Mitchell Riek and Evan Hill #raspberrypi #arduino #assistantSDK

Cheeseborg has one purpose: to create the best grilled cheese it possibly can! Cheeseborg is fully automated, voice activated, and built from scratch. With Google Assistant SDK integration, Cheeseborg can even be used as a part of your smart home.

Our goal was to make an easy snack even easier. The design combines 7 individual subsystems enabling the assembly, cooking, and serving of a perfect, repeatable, tasty grilled cheese.

A big learning was how challenging it is to manipulate bread and cheese repeatedly. After several iterations, we converged on a vacuum lift mechanism, inspired by industrial robotic manipulation of small electronics. Due to the porosity of bread and the gloss of cheese, it was very challenging to find a mechanism working for both, but vacuum certainly seemed to do the trick!

Our First Prototype, just showing the sliding and grilling mechanisms.

For the actuation of of the electromechanical subsystems, we use stepper motors and servos combined with linkages, lead screws, linear bearings, a winch, and other mechanical components. For buttering (not pictures) we have a delightful spray butter can attached to an acrylic stand beside the grill.

Beyond the mechanisms, which are controlled by an Arduino Mega, the system is enabled with Google Assistant SDK running on an Raspberry Pi 3b, so the whole thing can be activated just by saying β€œHey Google, make me a grilled cheese please!” From there, the machine stacks the bread, cheese, bread, then slides over the platform toward the grill as the buttering station sprays the bottom of the grill. Once the sandwich is placed on the grill, the butter sprays again (to coat the top of the sandwich). Then the grill closes, and cooks for the precises amount of the time for the perfect gooey grilled cheese! Then the grill opens and the sandwich is kicked to the serving slot for a hungry friend to enjoy.

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If you have an inquiry about Cheeseborg, use the form below to contact me!