Project info for Open Automaton Project

Share This Created 28 Jul 2003 at 05:26 UTC by dafyddwalters, last modified 19 Aug 2007 at 10:15 UTC by dafyddwalters.


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The aim of the Open Automaton Project is to develop a coherent set of open, modular hardware and software components, forming a reference design from which powerful and intelligent autonomous PC-based mobile robots for the home or office can be built.

The goal of the project is to keep the cost low (it should be possible to build a robot based on the Open Automaton Project for around the price of a good PC) without compromising too much on performance. This is made possible by taking advantage of the low cost of readily available consumer-grade hardware (motherboards, firewire webcams and the like), and leveraging as much existing open standards, code and methodologies as possible.

The custom hardware/firmware modules that have been completed to date are:

  • Input Module - emulates a PC keyboard, takes input from an IR or RF remote control, or on-board keypad
  • RF Remote Module - a handheld radio frequency remote keypad to use with the Input Module
  • Power Management Module - controls main battery charging and communicates with docking station by IR
  • Docking Station - ground-based charging dock which acts on IR instructions beamed from robot's PMM
  • Sonar Array Module - interfaces with up to 16 Devantech SRF04 sonar modules
  • Motor Control Module - takes quadrature encoder signals from two wheels, outputs 20KHz PWM signals for two motor drivers.
  • Head Control Module - drives two RC servos (PWM) of the Pan and Tilt Head, and interfaces with the Eltec 442-3 human body heat sensor

The high-level software is still in development. At this point the plan is to start by leveraging the Player framework. For stereo vision, a modified version of motters' GPL'd code is favourite at the moment.

License: GNU GPL

Description: A blueprint for a PC-based droid, developed using open standards.

This project has the following developers:

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