If you have seen the starship delivery robots by Starship Technologies, you will know how cool delivery robot can be. Pulurobotics have released a set of low-cost opensource robots that are capable of carrying heavy loads and can be reconfigured to do several tasks.
Application robots are robots that can be configured to do several tasks. The Finish based company Pulurobotics have launched the Pulu set of robots called Pulurobots. Just like the way we have the Starship robot and other delivery robot, Pulurobots are low cost (low cost as compared to other robots), load bearing (can carry a payload of over 100kg), and are autonomous robots. Pulurobot can be used as – a delivery boy, a recycle bin, a nightguard, telepresence, shopping carrier, and many more.
The Affordable autonomous open source mobile robot is set to be published at Fosdem 2018, at the ULB Solbosch Campus in Belgium on Sunday 4th February 2018. At the heart of pulurobots is the Raspberry Pi, it needs one Raspberry Pi for navigation and communication with RobotBoard but can feed up to five Raspberries if you need more power or multiple Operating Systems to your application. The robot does Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM), charges automatically and fulfills the definition of an autonomous mobile robot.
Pulurobot was built from the ground up and doesn’t use ROS (Robots Operating System), even though it is compatible with it. Pulurobot comes in three models:
The Pulurobot S is the smallest version of the robot family with a footprint of about 400 x 300mm, Pulurobot S is capable of carrying over 50Kg of load, tested with 58Kg. Based on the same software and controller board that powers the other robots, Pulurobot S is ideal for applications that require small spaces or offices and a perfect fit for homes.
Pulurobot M is a medium size agile robot and comes in size of 650mm x 470mm with height 230mm and 304mm from the ground. It is powered by 2 pcs of 300W 24V BLDC wheel hub motor, uses LIDAR for navigating and mapping, 4 x 3D TOF (Timer of Flight) cameras and sonar sensors for obstacles. Pulurobot M is capable of carrying over 90 Kg of load, tested with about 118Kg and found no mechanical problems. It is meant to be an application platform. If you need more batteries for your application, you can stack it onto the robot. Inside the robot is a space for 240Wh 18650 battery array, but can easily accommodate around 1KWh on the chassis.
The following are some specification of the Pulurobot M:
MCU – STM32 microcontroller for sensor management & low-level navigation
SBC – Slot for Raspberry Pi 2 or 3 for running mapping (SLAM)
Connectivity – WiFi and/or 3G/4G
Sensor – MEMS gyroscope, accelerometer, compass
Motor controllers – 4pcs BLDC motor controllers, 700W peak, to support four-wheel drive computation
Power Supply – 5V/10A
Charger – 100W Lithium-ion charger
2D 360 degree LIDAR
Low-cost off-the-shelf 3D Time-of-Flight camera (SoftKinetic DepthSense) for mapping close obstacles
Riveted, laser-cut aluminum chassis
Robust suspension: always four wheels on the ground
Two-wheel drive, BLDC hub motors (similar to hoverboards)
Supports at 90kg when moving, mechanical structure can withstand a lot more
Battery – 18650-based lithium ion battery
Charging – Can find and mount to its charger automatically
Pulurobot L is the largest of all the Pulurobot series and is expected to carry around 300Kg load. Pulurbot is currently not yet available, still on the drawing board. Pulurobot L will find applications in industries.
While most of the robots are still under development and labeled to be open source, they haven’t yet released their SW-HW design to the public domain yet. It is quite possible that their design could be available after the publication on 4th of February. The Pulu S is available and will be available for pre-order for 999.00 EUR only during the Fosdem event, the Pulu M is available for purchase at about 3000 EUR, with delivery taking about 2 months.
Pulurobots could be a game changer in the robotics industries and could help foster more innovation, with the hope of bringing down the cost of building small but yet powerful robots in the future.
Unipolar stepper motor driver can drive unipolar stepper motor up to 3.5A and supply range is 10 To 50V DC. The board has been designed using STK672-442AEN IC. The STK672-442AN is a hybrid IC for use as a unipolar, 2-phase stepper motor driver with PWM current control and Micro-stepping.
This tiny board designed to drive bidirectional DC brushed motor of large current. DC supply is up to 50V DC. A3941 gate driver IC and 4X N Channel Mosfet IRLR024 used as H-Bridge. The project can handle a load up to 10Amps. Screw terminals provided to connect load and load supply, 9 Pin header connector provided for easy interface with micro-controller. On board shunt resistor provides current feedback.
The A3941 is a full-bridge controller for use with external N-channel power MOSFETs and is specifically designed for automotive applications with high-power inductive loads, such as brush DC motors. A unique charge pump regulator provides full (>10 V) gate drive for battery voltages down to 7 V and allows the A3941 to operate with a reduced gate drive, down to 5.5 V. A bootstrap capacitor is used to provide the above-battery supply voltage required for N-channel MOSFETs. An internal charge pump for the high-side drive allows DC (100% duty cycle) operation.
50V – 10A Bidirectional DC Motor Driver Using A3941 – [Link]
10 Amp 400V DC Intelligent power module board has been designed using ON Semiconductors STK544UC62K. This Inverter IPM module includes the output stage of a 3-phase inverter, pre-drive circuits, bootstrap circuits, protection circuits, op-amp based current sense circuit, comparator circuit for fault/Over current output, Bus voltage output, onboard 5V DC regulator for op-amp circuit. This board can be used to drive AC Induction, BLDC, PMSM motors and Brushed DC Motors. The module integrates optimized gate drive of the built-in IGBTs to minimize EMI and losses, while also providing multiple on-module protection features including under-voltage or over voltage , over-current , and fault reporting. The built-in, high-speed HVIC requires only a single supply voltage and translates the incoming logic-level gate inputs to the high-voltage, high-current drive signals required to properly drive the module’s internal IGBTs. Separate negative IGBT terminals are connected to shunt resistor to provide the current feedback to the micro-controller. This IPM module helps to develop various power applications and also can be used as H-Bridge for brushed DC motor. The module mainly helps to drive Hall sensor based, encoder based motors and 3 Phase AC Motors. The IC has Built-in dead-time for shoot-thru protection. Internal substrate temperature is measured with an internal pulled up thermistor. PWM frequency is up to 20 KHz. The board can be used in application like small machines as speed controller, washing machine, refrigerator, Air condition, automation, AC motor speed controller, dc motor speed controller, brushless dc motor driver, ac servo driver.
10A 400V DC Intelligent Power Module (IPM) – [Link]
This project made using MC3PHAC from NXP Semiconductor. The project generates 6 PWM signals for 3 Phase AC Motor controller. It’s very easy to make professional VFD combining with Intelligent Power Module (IPM) or 3 Phase IGBT/MOSFET with Gate driver. The board provides 6 PWM signals for the IPM or IGBT Inverter and also brake signal. Also this board works in stand-alone mode and doesn’t require any software programming/coding.
The MC3PHAC is a high-performance monolithic intelligent motor controller designed specifically to meet the requirements for low-cost, variable-speed, 3-phase ac motor control systems. The device is adaptable and configurable, based on its environment. It contains all of the active functions required to implement the control portion of an open loop, 3-phase ac motor drive. One of the unique aspects of this board is that although it is adaptable and configurable based on its environment, it does not require any software development. This makes the MC3PHAC a perfect fit for customer applications requiring ac motor control but with limited or no software resources available.
Included in the MC3PHAC are protective features consisting of dc bus voltage monitoring and a system fault input that will immediately disable the PWM module upon detection of a system fault.
2 Phase stepping motor driver is a tiny board based on STK682-010 hybrid IC from ON semiconductor and it can deliver current up to 2.5Amp and has supply up to 32V DC. It has multiple micro-stepping: Full step, 1/2th Step, 1/4th Step, 1/8th Step, 1/16th Step, 1/32th Step, 1/64th Step, 1/128th Step. PR1 trimmer potentiometer is provided to set the decay, 3.5V Slow Decay, 1.1V to 3.1V Mixed Decay, 0.8V-1V Fast Decay, and PR2 Trimmer Potentiometer provided to set the Current.
Supply Voltage Range 9-32V DC
Motor Load 2.5A Continues
On Board LM317 Regulator For 5V DC Logic Supply
J1, J2, J3 Jumpers for Micro-Stepping
PR2 Current Adjust Trimmer Potentiometer
PR1 FDT Adjust Trimmer Potentiometer To Adjust Decay
Built In Automatic Half Current Maintenance energizing function
Built in Over Current Protection Circuit (Within IC)
Built Thermal Shutdown Circuit (Within IC)
2.5A 2Phase Micro-Stepping Stepper Motor Driver – [Link]
LCD is very important part of many DIY and industrial projects. The 16X2 LCD shield has been designed to develop LCD related projects using 28-40 Pin Pic development board or DSpic development board, along with LCD this shield includes LMD18201 DC Motor driver , 2 Trimmer potentiometer and 4 tact switches with jumpers. Jumpers can be used to connect switches to pre decided port pins or remove jumpers and connect switches to any port pin using female to female wire harness, LCD pins and H-Bridge signal inputs are open ended male header connector and can be hooked to any port pin with the help of female to female wire harness. This is a very useful shield to develop timer, measurements, dc motor driver with display, DC motor pump controller, automatic irrigation system and many more projects.
16X2 LCD Shield with LMD18201 Motor Driver – [Link]
Intelligent Power Module (IPM) board has been designed using FSBS5CH60 IC from Fairchild, which provides a fully-featured, high-performance inverter output stage for AC Induction, BLDC, and PMSM motors. These modules integrate optimized gate drive of the built-in IGBTs to minimize EMI and losses, while also providing multiple on-module protection features including under-voltage lockouts, over-current shutdown, and fault reporting. The built-in, high-speed HVIC requires only a single supply voltage and translates the incoming logic-level gate inputs to the high-voltage, high-current drive signals required to properly drive the module’s internal IGBTs. Separate negative IGBT terminals are connected to shunt resistor to provide the current feedback to the micro-controller. This IPM module helps to develop lots of power applications and also can be used as H-Bridge for brushed DC motor. The module is manly helps to drive Hall sensor based or encoder based motors, it doesn’t support FOC algorithm, FOC based IPM board is under development and will be publish soon.
Inteligent Power Module (IPM) Board for Brushless Motors – [Link]