Spinning gyroscope “boat” stabilization

When you use a “gyroscope” in Arduino and robotics projects, generally this means a small IMU that leverages several methods of sensing to tell how a device is moving. However, physical gyroscopes are able to employ a spinning disk stay upright mechanically. Could one be combined with advanced electronics to stabilize a robot or other craft?

James Bruton answers this question in the video below, going from a “bare” gyroscope, to an unpowered gimbal, and finally to a simulated boat. This utilizes a powered gimbal for stabilization that’s tilted in one axis by a DYNAMIXEL servo. Angle is measured using an Arduino Pro Mini along with an MPU-6050 IMU, and the gyroscope is controlled by an Arduino Mega.

You can check out the progression of this fun experiment in the video below, and find code/CAD info on GitHub.

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