Archive for the ‘Robots’ Category

The little Arduino robot arm that could!

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2016

As its name would suggest, the LittleArm is a mini 3D-printed robot that began as a weekend project. Its creator Gabe Bentz wanted a small arm that was easy to work with, and one that wouldn’t require him to dig deep into his wallet. So, as any Maker would do, he decided to design his own low-cost device.

After showing the LittleArm off, it wasn’t before long that he was approached by some STEM teachers in the area who wondered if the kit was something they could use in their classrooms. Ideally, every student should have one to tinker with, but unfortunately today’s systems tend to be too expensive and quickly loose parts and pieces. This is a problem that LittleArm is looking to solve.

The arm is powered by an Arduino Uno and four identical metal-geared micro servos, while all other mechanical components are 3D-printed. There’s also a modular gripper that’s actuated by a servo along with rigid end-effectors for various tasks. What’s more, a basic GUI enables you to control the arm, its gripper, the speed, as well as use its record function to train the robot to perform a specific task and then watch it play out the sequence.

The entirely open-source gadget comes as a DIY kit that can be purchased or built from scratch. Want one of your own? Check out Bent’z Kickstarter page here, and see the LittleArm in action below (including some of its dance moves).

Grab things with an Arduino robotic gripper

Thursday, June 30th, 2016

Recently-graduated high school students Sam Baumgarten and Graham Hughes have developed a pretty rad robotic gripper with the help of Arduino and 3D printing. The gripper itself consists of three large hobby servos joined to the fingers with a linkage. The underactuated fingers have a force sensor under each contact point, while the control glove is equipped with tiny vibrating motors at the fingertips. This, of course, provides haptic feedback to ensure that the user doesn’t crush anything–the greater the pressure, the stronger the motors vibrate.

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Maker adds gesture control to a surgical robotic

Friday, June 17th, 2016

The da Vinci System is one of the most popular surgical robots around, which allows surgeons to perform operations through only a few small incisions. The device works by translating a doctor’s hand movements into smaller, precise movements of tiny instruments inside the patient’s body. As ubiquitous as they may be in hospitals, chances are it’s never been operated quite like this before.

That’s because Julien Schuermans has managed to connect the robotic surgical tool’s hardware up to a LeapMotion controller, making its small forceps gesture-controlled. You can see how it all works in the video below. (more…)

Scubo is an omnidirectional robot for underwater exploration

Monday, June 13th, 2016

A team from ETH Zurich has created an incredible submersible robot called Scubo as a way to scan entire coral reefs. Equipped with six onboard webcams, the omnidirectional device is capable of exploring the deep sea from every angle. What’s more, users can take a virtual dive by throwing on a pair of VR glasses to make it feel as if they’re swimming with marine life.

Scubo consists of an Arduino Due for hard real-time tasks, an Intel NUC for high-performance calculation, an IMU, and a pressure sensor — all housed inside a carbon cuboid. Eight thrusters are symmetrically mounted to the outside, one at each corner, while a tube goes through the box to ensure proper water flow and to keep the electronics cool. The system is neutrally buoyed and weight in the form of screws can be added to the thruster arms to adjust buoyancy and the center of gravity. (more…)

Dtto is a self-reconfigurable modular robot

Friday, June 10th, 2016

An entry in this year’s Hackaday Prize, Dtto is a snake-like robot designed to be modular and self-reconfigurable.

Inspired by Bruce Lee’s famous water quote, Dtto can transform into various shapes by changing the position and connection of its 3D-printed modules. As Hackaday points out, each section of Dtto is a double-hinged joint. When two come together, magnets help them align. A servo-controlled latch solidly docks the sections, which then work in unison. Impressively, it can connect and separate segments autonomously – without any human intervention. Creator Alberto believes the versatility of the bot will enable it to perform rescue missions, explore unknown environments, and operate in space. (more…)

Build your own life-size, multipurpose robot with Arduino

Thursday, June 9th, 2016

If you’ve always wanted a bot for a friend, personal assistant or butler, you’re in luck. John Choi, a Carnegie Mellon University computer science and arts student, has managed to build his own life-size robotics platform for about $2,000. Sure, a price tag like that may not seem “cheap” but in comparison to other research-grade platforms out there, it’s a bargain.

Ideal for Makers, students, educators, artists and researchers alike, the Multipurpose Mobile Manipulator Mk 1 is capable of playing the piano, drawing pictures, preparing meals, watering plants, and engaging in toy sword duels, among many other things. (more…)

Build an IoT Rover with Arduino Mega and FONA

Friday, May 13th, 2016

For his end of the year project at the University of Valencia, Maker Jorge Crespo built an Internet-connected, GPS-enabled rover using an Arduino Mega, an Adafruit FONA 808 module, and a PIC18F45K20 microcontroller.

Other hardware includes IR sensors for obstacle avoidance, a dual H-bridge motor controller, an LCD screen, DC/DC converters, and an 11.1V, 5Ah LiPo battery. The bot is managed through a web-based interface, allowing its user to select between auto or manual commands, as well as track its location on a map.

The project can be found on GitHub.

Simone Giertz built a hair washing robot

Sunday, May 8th, 2016

From getting out of bed to applying lipstick to eating breakfast, Simone Giertz has seemingly found every possible way to automate her morning routine. Next on that list? A hair-washing robot made up of a rubber hand, a bottle of shampoo and some basic electronics that allows her to lather, rinse and repeat, while leaving her hands free for other tasks like brushing her teeth. (more…)

The easiest educational robot for kids, Mbot, goes AtHeart

Monday, November 30th, 2015

mbloc

It’s cute, it’s fun and easy to assemble, it’s mBot by Makeblock, the new educational robot joining Arduino AtHeart program!

mBot it’s an all-in-one solution for kids and beginners to enjoy the hands-on experience about robotics, programming, and electronics.

You can program it with drag-and-drop graphical programming software based on Scratch 2.0 and the magic happens: the robots can follow lines, kick balls and push objects, avoid walls and more. You can also switch from graphical to text-based programming in Arduino mode as it can be coded with Arduino IDE environment. (more…)

Watch a fin-propelled underwater robot prototype

Wednesday, November 25th, 2015

underwaterRobot

The robotic prototype swimming under water propelled by fins, it was developed at the Control Systems and Robotics Laboratory of the Technological Educational Institute of Crete, in Heraklion (Greece) and it’s controlled by an Arduino Mega:

Each fin is comprised of three individually actuated fin rays, which are interconnected by an elastic membrane. An on-board microcontroller generates the rays’ motion pattern that result in the fins’ undulations, through which propulsion is obtained. The prototype, which is fully untethered and energetically autonomous, also integrates an IMU/AHRS unit for navigation purposes, a wireless communication module, and an on-board video camera. The video contains footage from experiments conducted in a laboratory test tank to investigate closed loop motion control strategies, as well as footage from sea trials.

the Arduino runs a custom-developed real time firmware that implements two Central Pattern Generator (CPG) networks to generate the undulatory motion profile for the robot’s fins. The robot  contains a  7.4V lipo battery powering also a Bluetooth module for wireless communication and a video camera to record footage of the missions.

UnderwaterRobot2

 

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