If you think this tiny autonomous micromouse robot kind of sounds like a vacuum cleaner, you could be right. Maintaining adequate traction on the maze floor while running at high speeds is always a challenge, and builders have attempted quite a few different strategies to solve the problem.
David Otten, who has been involved in micromouse competitions since the very beginning, fielded some early vacuum style designs quite a few years ago with mixed results. More recently builders, like Hidejr1053 whose robot appears in the video below, have refined their design approaches and are achieving very impressive results.
I'm wondering what the limiting factors will be, now that they have successfully addressed the traction issues. What is the next constraint that limits cranking up the robot speed even further? And, what is the theoretical upper limit on speed?
It's going to be interesting to see what records are broken as the 2013 series of micromouse competitions gets underway.
Related links: micromouse_AVCHD_60p_test - YouTube