Badger gate
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Badger Gate. INTEREGR 160 Team Amit Professor John Murphy S.A. Amit Nimunkar Client Mark Novak. About AgrAbility. Mark Novak, a BSE professor at UW-Madison is an outreach specialist for AgrAbility

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Badger Gate

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Badger gate

Badger Gate


Team Amit

Professor John Murphy

S.A. Amit Nimunkar

Client Mark Novak

About agrability

About AgrAbility

  • Mark Novak, a BSE professor at UW-Madison is an outreach specialist for AgrAbility

  • AgrAbility is a federally funded program with the goal of aiding disabled farmers so they can continue production.

Problem statement

Problem Statement

  • Our goal is to design a prototype of an automated livestock gate. The gate must be remotely operated to allow a disabled farmer to stay in the vehicle while the gate opens and closes. It must securely latch in order to serve the primary purpose of keeping all livestock inside the pen. It must also be safe, inexpensive, and reliable



  • Two-way Winch System

    • Powered by a motorized spool to wind cables attached to the gate.

  • Electronic Actuator

    • An electronic arm extends and retracts to push and pull the gate.



  • Motorized Wheel

    • A remote operated wheel drives the gate open.

  • Motor and Chain

    • A motor rotates a gear which opens a gate by spinning a chain.

Evaluation criteria

Evaluation Criteria

  • Safety

  • Cost

  • Efficiency

  • Reliability

  • Ease of use

  • Installation

  • Maintenance

  • Opens Manually

  • Space/size

  • Power Required

  • Locks securely

  • Remote compatible



  • Motor and Chain requires a new mounting and difficult installation.

  • The motorized wheel would be too unreliable.

  • A decision matrix and a group vote was used to pick a final design.

  • The winch system was chosen as the final design.

Final design

Final Design

Model construction

Model Construction

The basic model was a plywood base, with square, 2x2 fence posts, wire fencing, and a ¾ inch diameter PVC pipe, 2’ by 1’ gate. Eye hooks constituted the hinges, and a plastic wheel can mounted to the end of the gate.

Pulley system

Pulley System

  • We had several different ideas for use as the pulley system.

  • Tensioners were needed to pick up slack in excess cable as the motor rotated.

Pulley system solution

Pulley System Solution

  • Utilizes a spring loaded tube to keep pressure on the cable and take up the slack produced when the gate is opened.

  • Uses 2 tubes of different diameters that can slide over one another with a spring on the inside.

Motor and pulleys

Motor and Pulleys

16 foot gate scaled calculations

16-Foot Gate Scaled Calculations

  • Amount of power required to open the gate is approximately 20 watts.

  • Voltage varies depending on the motor rating

    • Only 11 watts should have been needed

    • Motor efficiency was calculated into the formula as error.

  • Wire: Steel cable, rated 480-500 lbs

  • Pulley arms: Wood or steel

  • Other materials can be found on our parts list.

Servo operated latch

Servo-Operated Latch

  • Powered by servo motor

  • When power is applied, latch opens

  • 1.25 V DC

  • Operated via joystick: pushing up opens latch



Latch construction

Latch Construction

  • Constructed of Grade 304 Stainless Steel

  • Servo contained in waterproof housing

  • Impervious to water

  • Able to withstand large forces

  • Will not rust or freeze



Strengths and weaknesses

+ The system can be universally mounted on preexisting gates.

+ The gate is able to swing both into and out of the pen.

+ Opens gate quickly.

+ Can be opened manually if system should fail.

Requires more installation.

Length of pulley arms and cables take up more space.

Strengths and Weaknesses

Cost report

Cost Report

  • Estimated Price List for 1/8 Scale Prototype Gate

Cost report1

Cost Report

  • Estimated Price List for Full Scale Gate

Video demo

Video Demo

Gate Video Demo



Calculations summary

Calculations Summary

  • Torque data:

  • Torque= Force*Distance= abs(F)*abs(d)*sin(θ)

  • “Theta”= the angle between the moment arm and the direction of the force.

  • T=F*d*cos(α)

  • “Alpha”=the complementary angle to the gate

  • Torque conversion: 1.27 Newton meter≈ 180 ounce inches

  • The motor will exert 183 ounce inches of torque on the prototype gate.

  • Derived formula used for initial torque: T=0.10667(tension) Newton meters

  • Wire should be able to withstand above 20 Newtons/4.5 lbs of instantaneous tension

Calculations summary1

Calculations Summary

  • Gate speed data:

  • Angular velocity= ω= 2π/1.4 radians per second: Motor speed

  • Diameter of spool= 1.5 inch

  • Tangential Velocity of spool= (1.5)(π/1.4) inches per second

  • D= v*t= (.75)(2π/1.4)(time)

  • D/(π(1.5))= # of turns of spool

  • D= ((7.5)^2+(6)^2)^(1/2)

  • Minimum Time= D/V≈2 to 2.50 seconds for the gate to open

  • Closing the gate should take approximately the same time

  • The calculations for the gate speed are accurate within less than a second. The scaled up gate will have to move somewhat slower.

Calculations summary2

Calculations Summary

  • Gate Power:

  • Kinetic Rotational Energy formula: K= (1/2)Iω^2

  • Derived formula for rotational inertia of gate (model and scaled up): I= (1/3)mL^2

  • L= length of moment arm and m= mass of gate

  • K= (1/6)mV^2

  • V= L*ω= velocity of gate≈ 4π/2.25 inches per second

  • Mass of scaled down gate≈ 1.00 Kg

  • K= (1/6)(1.00kg)(((π/2)/2.00)^2)((2ft)(1/3.25))= 0.0389 joules of kinetic energy for the prototype gate

  • Power= Work/Time

  • Work= Δ Kinetic Energy= K(f)- K(i)= 0.0389 joules- 0

  • Theoretical Power after assumption of 50% error: 0.039 Watts as a maximum.

  • Rating of servo motor (from catalogue): 0.0384 to 0.048

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