Initially, our solution to detecting a litter box full of feces involved utilizing motor feedback. However, this approach posed two main challenges. Firstly, providing significant resistance to the motor during feedback required a considerable amount of force, but practical tests showed that feces might not always offer enough resistance. This could result in feces being scraped out of the litter box. Secondly, motors equipped with feedback mechanisms are costly and could potentially hinder product affordability. With the pandemic already causing transportation costs to double, we were operating under substantial cost constraints.
Subsequently, we experimented with methods like infrared beam interruption and physical trigger switches. However, these attempts were either infeasible for production or led to subpar user experiences during actual use, prompting us to abandon them.
Following the successful implementation of the cat detection sensor, we began exploring the use of Time-of-Flight (TOF) sensors for the full box detection. The results were very promising. However, we made repeated adjustments to the specific installation location, leading to the presence of empty column slots beside the full box sensor on the base of the AIMICAT device that users receive. This is a trace of our previous positioning adjustments.
At that time, this marked significant progress and fulfilled the purpose of detecting a full litter box. However, based on feedback from numerous users, we have upgraded the full box detection aspect in the current Aimicat Pro model, employing an infrared beam interruption approach with enhanced stability.