Sunday, May 22, 2016

Let the ravings begin!

So what is this?

This will be an place for me to dump the little knowledge and experience i have in the area of robotics. It will most likely be filled with lots of spectacular failures and half done projects. I am currently thinking a lot about Biped Locomotion, but more on that later.

Here is a list of categories that i will probably discuss in the future:

  • Embedded systems
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Control theory
  • Electronics
  • Mechanics
  • Software Development 
  • Software Defined Radio (SDR)
  • Test and verification
  • 3D printing
  • CNC machining
  • Laser cutting

To be a bit more precise here is some of the more common applications i use:
  • Robotic Operating System (ROS)
  • Gazebo
  • OpenOCD
  • KiCAD
  • FreeCAD
And here are some of the equipment i have in my small lab:

K40 (Laser cutter)

Folger Tech Kossel 2020 (3D Printer)

Hopefully i will get a CNC machine before the end of the year.

Past projects:

9g Servo driven biped

This was my first biped, it was made in a week and destroyed in a minute ;)
There where going to be a Mini Sumo competition close to my home, so i decided to enter the competition, but i did not have the time to build something that would actually have any chance.
So i studied the rules and went for the LOLz and designed a biped that would try to just dodge opponents until the time ended. It turns out that the idea was as bad as it sounds. But I got a lot of attention for bringing a biped robot to a competition where everyone else had wheeled robots.
It actually won a match ( the opponent started by driving of the field, to the general laughter from the audience ).

Micro Stepper Biped

The idea was to take a different approach from the "lets trow some servos together and call it a robot" approach. So i found some cheap, small linear stepper motors on ebay. sourced some electronics, made some cad designs and cut a prototype with my K40 laser cutter. The project have been standing still since 2014. 

RoboCup Fotball Robots MiddleSize League

In this project i worked in a group to create several football playing robots in 20 weeks. I was responsible for the hardware and sponsorship. We had a very tight budget so I aimed for as simple and cheap as possible. In the end, it failed on the electronics guys, the motor controller they built ended up in flames after ~5 seconds of usage. They had not accounted for the occasional power spike... But it was fun designing robots in SolidWorks and playing around with CNC machines. This was also the first time I actually used ROS for a real robot.

 Chinese Robot platform, SLAM

During 6 months, I studied in Shanghai, China. During this time i learned a little bit Chinese (enough to make a confusing conversation even more confusing) and I also worked on a stereo vision SLAM project with the pre-built robot platform above.  We used two PS3 Eyes that we mounted on a piece of PCB and then triangulated a distance with OpenCV. 

Of cause there are more robot projects, but i will cover them if i pick them up again. 

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