Building a Light Tracking Vehicle Using Arduino UNO and Dagu Rover 5

Hi everyone,

I'm kind of new to all this stuff and I'll be glad if you help me. I'm a senior electronics engineer student and my final project is about making "a light tracking vehicle". I decided to use an Arduino UNO for this project. There will be panel on the Rover 5 which can rotate in x- & y- axes. The panel should face to the light source and the mission of the vehicle is bring closer the panel to the light source. After reaching a determined voltage level, the vehicle'll stop. That's it.

Panel would have 4 light sensors on all 4 sides of it and with the help of voltage difference it will position it self to the light source (first it will look at the diffrence on the sensors which are on the horizontal line, the servo will turn to direction of the lowe leveled sensors until both sensors have no diffrence. This procedure is same for the ones on the vertical line.).

While searching for the "vehicle" part of my project, I come up with this Dagu Rover 5 and liked it very much. However I'not sure which model should I buy? I found 4 motored and 2 motored ones; I don't know which one is enough (If you ask me I would choose 2 motored) ? (I found 2 models of Rover 5 on; one has 2 motor and 2 encoders and the other one has 2 motors and no encoders) And which kind of motors are they? Servo or DC motor? Also I don't any idea about that encoder stuff. What does it for? Is is useful or necessary for me? (I might have forgotten to tell you everything about my project, if I did please say and I'll explain)

Thanks in advance,

Ali Sercan KARTAL

I think they are DC motors judging by the code on my page here:

They are driven by the motor board with PWM output (and a forwards/reverse signal).

I don't think 4 motors would be faster (each one would have the same maximum speed) but might be able to go up higher hills. Although I found mine with 2 motors was powerful enough to flip itself onto its back.

You might want to consider as an alternative the Parallax BOE Bot:

That was completely self-contained (apart from the Arduino), and also came with parts, and instructions, for an IR sensor, and light detection. For example, this page:

I found the Parallax BOE Bot was easy to assemble, and the parts fitted together well. Plus the instructions on the site above are very comprehensive and detailed.

However you should be able to do the same with the Dagu, except you may find it a bit fiddlier to assemble, and you'll need to get the light sensor and other parts yourself.


I build the car. Recording such a video wasn't a planned stuff, we just said that "What'll happen if the car will mot work tomorrow at the presentation?" and recorded this for an "emergency case" : ) Thus, I'm speaking in Turkish but wrote a discription about what I've done in English also. Thank you all for you help : )

Looks good!