Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
Inspiring students, one robot at a time.

Air hogs remote


Entry ID #: 3568
Created: Wed, Jan 11, 2017 5:52 AM

During the Ti take it apart challenge, I took apart a helicopter controller. I chose to use an helicopter controller because I thought it would be interesting to take apart something that sends a signal to control a machine, because it interacts with another object and isn't too expensive. When I opened up the back, there was not as many components as one would think from the size of the controller. There was the main board, and two secondary boards. The first secondary board was on the same plane as the main board, and was used to connect the batteries to the main board. This board had the RoHS logo on it, which is used to show that the board was not made of any hazardous materials like led. RoHS was on all of the boards in the controller. The other secondary board was for transmitting the signal. This board was visible from the outside of the controller, through a piece of red plastic. I am not sure what companies made the chips because there are no company logos. But I believe that the boards may have been made by Texas Instruments because in all the UL numbers it said TX. I also did a UL lookup. For this I used multiple websites and tried multiple of the more obvious sets of numbers, but did not get a company name from anything. That left me thinking that the letters TX were for Texas. Computer parts are made all around the world and are manufactured exactly or very close to the same way by every company. That makes finding what company made these parts a lot harder because these parts could be made in china or the US, by a large company or a very small company. Some lessons I learned from this experiment were about identifying parts, and abilities to track parts like circuit boards. It may seem easy at first to figure out what company made a circuit board because you would think that they would want their logo to be known. Since the circuit boards are usually designed not to be seen, companies could care less about what their logo looks like. Instead, I learned that electronic parts companies use identification numbers called UL numbers to mark or identify their products. These numbers may not stand out for each particular company, but they are all unique. I also learned that you can find lists of lots of UL numbers on line, so if you want to find out who made parts for a device you can find out. There are also websites that make this process much easier, because they have a search bar that you can type your UL number into and identify the company. I learned that the second method Is useful for when you have a UL number, but not a company, and the first method for if you don't have a UL number but have a company. 


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