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Archive for the ‘Robotics’ Category

Sourino — which comes from the French word for mouse, “souris,” plus Arduino — is a small robot by 11-year-old maker Electrocat, meant to entertain kitties and kids alike.

The device features a 3D-printed body roughly shaped like a mouse, controlled by a Nano along with three HC-SR04 ultrasonic sensors poking out for autonomous navigation. An IR sensor is implemented for remote operation, and two small gearmotors with a driver board enable it to move around on the floor.

As seen in the video below, Sourino is able to travel a path made out of books and interact with (more like drive crazy!) the house cat. Full build instructions are found here, including a parts list, Arduino code, and CAD files.

La Toulouse Robot Race is an annual racing event held in Toulouse, France, which includes a 10-meter autonomous sprint for multi-legged robots. The current record for quadrupeds is 42 seconds, so Sebastian Coddington decided to construct a robot in hopes of taking the category at the next race in January 2021.

His “GorillaBot” quadruped features limbs made from two-servo five-bar linkage systems, controlled using an Arduino Nano. In autonomous mode, the robot stays on course thanks to a magnetometer; however, if it does lose its way, an on-board ultrasonic sensor helps to keep it from crashing.

Apart from electronics and fasteners, the inexpensive build is completely 3D-printable, and assembly directions with some videos are available in the project write-up. From the demo clip below, the GorillaBot looks like it will be quite a competitor, and perhaps Coddington will even be able to enhance the design before the event!

As a part of their masters program at the University of Stuttgart, Jan Ingo Haller and Lorin Samija created a robotic pet that moves in a manner that may not be immediately evident. With the internals obscured by a cloth covering, the moving OLOID, or mOLOID, seems to roll from one vague lobe section to another like some sort of claymation creature.

The mOLOID’s unique locomotion is due to an internal “oloid” structure, an arrangement of two circles at 90°. Two servos move weights around the perimeter of each circle to vary its center of gravity, causing it to flop back and forth.

An Arduino Uno controls the mOLOID, which features a passive infrared sensor that allows it to react to the environment and an HC-05 Bluetooth module for user interface. A small speaker also provides audible feedback.

Corona has changed our lives: it requires us to physicially distance, which in turn leads to social distancing. So what could be a solution? Maybe a pet? But no, Corona comes from animals. Let’s save ourselves from another Corona 2.0. But if we have to keep away from humans (to not infect and not be infected) and animals but remain the social beings we are, what should we do?

Have no despair! We have found a solution: the moving OLOID a.k.a. mOLOID. It combines interesting geometry (a bit nerdy but nerdy is trendy!) with many aspects of pets: it can make you smile, moves on its own, makes cute sounds and listens to you — at least most of the time.

While 2020 may seem like a very futuristic year, we still don’t have robotic maids like the Jetsons’ Rosie the Robot. For his latest element14 Presents project, DJ Harrigan decided to create such a bot as a sort of animatronic character, using an ESP8266 board for interface and overall control, and a MKR ZERO to play stored audio effects.

The device features a moveable head, arms and eyes, and even has a very clever single-servo gear setup to open and close its mouth.

UI is via smartphone running a Blynk app, and Rosie’s antennas can light up along with a “beep beep” sound to let you know it needs your attention!

More details can be found in Harrigan’s post here.

For a class project, University of Stuttgart students Ekin Sila Sahin, Lior Skoury, and Simon Treml came up with a unique painting robot named the Physical Twin.

The Physical Twin travels on a three-wheeled chassis and mounts a four-axis arm with a brush. An operator controls the arm to dip the brush into an onboard paint container, and can then manipulate it for application.

The controller consists of a joystick for movement as well as a mini version of the arm. Four potentiometers measure arm input angles, which are duplicated on four corresponding servos on the robot. A pair of Arduino Mega boards are used for the setup — one on the mobile robot and another in the remote unit.

You can see the device in action in the videos below, showing off direct operation and the ability to play back prerecorded movements.

One of the simplest ways to make a mobile robot involves differential steering, where two wheels move at different speeds as needed to turn, and a roller on the back keeps it from tipping over. The MrK_Blockvader is an excellent take on this type of bot, demonstrated in the first clip below. It features a nice blocky body comprised out of 3D-printed parts, wheels driven by tiny gear motors, and an integrated roller ball on the back.

The MrK_Blockvader is controlled via an Arduino Nano, along with an nRF24 breakout that allows it to receive signals from a radio transmitter unit. The build includes LED lighting as well as a piezo buzzer for all the beeps and boops. It can also take advantage of various sensors if necessary.

The eventual goal is to use the MrK_Blockvader in a network of robots, hinted at in the second video with a worker at its side.

Poisonous plants, like poison ivy, can really ruin your day. In an effort to combat this “green menace,” YouTuber Sciencish decided to create his own quadruped robot.

The robotic dog is equipped with two servos per leg, for a total eight, which enable it to move its shoulders and elbows back and forth.

An Arduino Uno controller determines leg positions via trigonometric calculation, and when in position, it dispenses weed killer via a relay and aquarium pump setup. The reservoir can also be used to hold other liquids, whether for watering duties or even to provide extra fuel to a fire.

If you’d like to build a walking biped robot, this 3D-printed design by Technovation looks like a fantastic place to start. Each leg features three servos that actuate it at the hip, knee, and ankle for a total of six degrees of freedom.

Control is handled by an Arduino Uno board that rides on top of the legs, along with a perfboard to connect to the servos directly.

Movements are calculated via inverse kinematics, meaning one simply has to input the x and z positions, and the Arduino calculates the proper servo angles. The bot is even able to take steps between two and 10 centimeters without falling over.

The Internet has been perhaps more important than ever to keep us connected these days. Available technology, however, apparently wasn’t good enough for brothers Hunter and Josh Irving, who built their own telepresence robot using parts on-hand during their own two-person hackathon.

The robot they came up with, dubbed TELEBOT, features a partially 3D-printed face along with a set of chattering teeth and eyes recycled from an antique doll. An Arduino Uno is used to take audio signals from remote “guests,” simulating their facial expressions with servos that drive its mouth and LED-lit eyes. 

The duo designed TELEBOT’s “body” out of an adjustable lamp for manual movement. And, as an added bonus, the device is capable of glowing in the dark and can be customized with a wizard, cowboy or top hat. 

While it might not be the most comforting robot you’ve ever seen, it looks like a fun build! 

Daniel Hingston wanted to build a four-legged walking robot for several years, and with current coronavirus restrictions he finally got his chance. His 3D-printed robodog, dubbed “GoodBoy,” is reminiscent of a miniature version of Boston Dynamics’ Spot, which helped inspired the project. 

It’s extremely clean, with wiring integrated into the legs mid-print. Two micro servos per leg move it in a forward direction, controlled by an Arduino Uno.

Obstacle avoidance is provided by a pair of ultrasonic sensor “eyes,” allowing it to stop when something is in its path. An LDR sensor is also implemented, which when covered by its human minder commands it to present its paw for shaking.

Be sure to check out a short demo of GoodBoy below! 



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