Souped Up GoPiGo3 Concept

I have long been preaching to the walls about how much processor do you really need on a GoPiGo3. While the Pi3B gives the best play time vs processing power for most users, the upgrade to Pi3B+ of the current GoPiGo3 stock configuration added 5GHz WiFi with a slight bump in processing power, without severely impacting the playtime due to the increase in battery capacity of the stock Li-Ion pack.

The GoPiGo3 - Raspberry Pi stack supports a limited height heatsink so even with the Pi3B or Pi3B+ the processing power is actually not the major limiting factor - heat is. While it is possible to use all four processor cores for about a minute or two, only two cores can be steadily taxed fully to remain under the 70degC processor self-protection throttling temperature limit.

Of course as soon as someone mentions OpenCV or TensorFlow(Lite) on the GoPiGo3, I start wondering how a “SuperCharged Raspberry Pi4 GoPiGo3” (with 2 to 4GB memory), could be built to allow the processing advantage of the Pi4.

While reading that a Pi400 (which does not have a fan) could be overclocked to 2GHz for over 30 minutes without nearing the throttling limit, I had to find out what is different that my lowly Pi3B+ cannot even sustain “pedal to the metal” more than two minutes.

Turns out the Pi400 has a honkin’ heatsink to allow unaspirated excellence!

There are lots of folk printing 3D cases for their Pi computers, but the real genius in my eyes will be a GoPiGo3 compatible “heatsink wings” for the new 2GHz Pi4.

Might even make real-time vision processing possible for the GoPiGo3!

That’ll be true “Autonomous Driving”


Though it really looks like an RF shield so that they can pass FCC testing.

. . . and isn’t that a BIG HOLE where the processor is? Where’s the heat sink?


Who would have thought of using the RF shield as a heat sink? That’s what they did. There is a thermal foam between the processor and the shield/heatsink:

The article showed thermal camera image with very even temperature spread out under the entire keyboard.

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That looks pretty hot under the “J, K, L” keys. If that dark blue is +26°, what’s the white under the right-hand home row?  Do I smell plastic melting?  [sound bite from The Wizard of Oz  “Melllting. . . melllting. . .”]

I’d be interested in seeing a citation for the article.

Oh, and don’t forget that that’s a LOT of metal covering a LOT of surface area.  If your robot was named “Sally Fields”, you could put big metal wings on it and call it “The Flying Robot”.  :wink:

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yes, but it is also encased in plastic and horizontal.

Imagine vertical wings running from the front to the back between the two gopigo3 chassis plates, OR how about the top plate from metal with a tab spreader from the processor to the top plate?

OR just keep dreaming that I’m actually going to write some software that needs more than two processors of the Pi3B+… 2022 has started off a bit slow in my software output measurement.


Or some big copper heat-pipes to a huge honkin’ radiator.  Or, bring the heat-pipes up the sides, cut the tops off at an angle, paint them silver, and make the startup sound C. W. McCall’s Convoy

. . . or, (though I know it’s agin’ yer religion), you could mount a heatsink and fan on a Pi-4.


Actually, a couple fans could materialize one of my childhood dreams. In the early 60’s there was an air-cushion bumper car ride at Disneyland, and the Army was trying out air-cushion amphibious assault vehicles. I had a flat dish shaped disk toy with a balloon that floated about on a cushion of air.

I could take the wheels off Carl, mount fans on the motors, add a rubber skirt and voila! The Pi4 cooler can levitate and motivate Carl. I must be tired… I’m starting to believe my day dreams.

Carl with a skirt might be the first non-binary robot?


That leads to two questions:

Would you have to get another robot and name it Carla?

Where would you get the quantum computer to make him non-binary?


Male sure the skirt is a plaid, and give him a Scots bonnet to go with it.


I like it - McCarl. I’ll have to teach him to play the Bodhran I have on the wall.


That would be O’Carl. According to Wikipedia, the Bodhran is of Irish origin.


Yeah I’m one of the "Mc"s with an Irish ancestor of a Scot ancestor that was paid to go to Ireland to break the hold of the Catholic church.


I’m a “mutt” too.

  • The “Harris’s” who are of English decent.
  • The Kermits who are of Scotts decent, (supposedly)
  • The Prouty’s who (I think), were German
    – and –
  • The Powers who were of (I think) Irish decent.
    (Not sure, maybe I got the last two backwards?)

(Side note: Francis Gary Powers, the guy that got shot down over Russia, was a cousin of mine on my mom’s side.  One of the people who helped shoot him down was Svetlana’s uncle Tolya - and if that’s not a coincidence, I don’t know what is.)

All my ancestors were either preachers or professors, (An old relative, Thomas Kermit, helped found Harvard, and the Harris’s who settled in North Carolina, founding a town named “Harris” were all Methodist ministers.  I think the Prouty’s and the Powers were also educators.)

I guess that’s where I get my big mouth from!


Every family has a preacher, teacher, perjurer, and a murderer, hopefully spread between the ancestors.


Wow - very small world.

A souped up GoPiGo4 would be great. Although in my case I’m wondering if some of my issues are more the lidar than processing. But then again, I’m doing most of the navigation processing on a laptop, so more on-robot processing would be good.

I’m settling in to my new job, so I’ve broken Finmark out of storage have started working on it again. Yay.


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