The robot is supposed to carry a wireless camera (Approx 2-3lbs),
and is to navigate a buildinging mostly. Money is not a constraint.
I would like to know the position of the robot as precisely as possible
so it wud be preferable if it comes bundled with a gps.
That sounds like Microsoft ;)
Do you have a company? Do you have a $50 Million robot? Show
me the specs. Have u sold a few copies? Can you ship it to me tomorrow?
Since you asked, my max budget is at most $2-3k.
If nothing is available i'll make it in less than $1k.
That is true indeed. I guess I dont need gps then. :)
Just a mobile platform that can be controlled
wirelessly (from a pc) and carry a payload.
Well, for $50 M I'll happily act as your agent to take care of the
tedious details of research, negotiation, arranging for shipping, that
kind of stuff. Bargain, really! ;-)
Probably need to add a few more constraints, else you'll get a lot of
pointers to RC model cars with 2.4 GHz video cameras duct taped to the
roof (which might be all you need if you're trying to find how the
racoon is getting into the office pantry). Stair climbing ability takes
a lot of the easy solutions off of the table. Required? WRT navigation,
would simple wheel odometry, with the inevitable slippage, be OK or
should that be coupled to a MEMs INS? Do you need anti-jamming,
anti-spoofing, or anti-tapping capability on the data links or is the RF
environment benign? Is the physical environment benign, or does the
system need to be useable in an explosive atmosphere? With water spray?
With salt water spray?
I am just looking for an rc-car duct taped with a wireless camera.
The requirements are that the rc-car should be controllable by
my computer (and not the rc controller). Does anyone know of
an rc controller that can be used with a computer instead of a
I think something like this:
But I wish it was built on rc-plane frequencies and was easier to use.
Anyone knows any products built on them?
You can't use aircraft freq's for terrestrial apps. It isn't nice.
You can integrate the PWM out of a microcontroller to an analog signal which
could be fed into the pots of a standard R/C transmitter, but be warned,
buildings have a nasty habit of absorbing RF. Vantec may have a solution for
this already. If the building has wifi, go that route, if possible. With
R/C, we found different manufactures and price of radio had a huge impact on
I am playing with the Gumstix processors presently. Linux based, not my
field of expertise, but with a wifi network in my building, I am good to go
with a wifi card. They also have bluetooth modules.
Your video transmitter may be problematic as well. We experienced a lot of
interference from the phone system, which had a lot of wireless phones for
those exec's on the go. Typically, once we got behind more than two walls,
we lost signal.
I am playing with the tamiya TLT-1. It has four wheel steering, which makes
it a bit more suited to these robotics type applications. Lynxmotion makes
some nifty platforms as well.
One way to get around the video issue is to avoid 2.4ghz wireless cameras.
1.2ghz cams are widely available, as will as cameras that work in the 900mhz
range. You can also get cameras in the UHF range, but you are really supposed to
have a license to use these.
(Replies: cleanse my address of the Mark of the Beast!)
A lot of those (at least the cheapies I buy for parts ;=) just have
bang-bang controllers, not proportional (servo) control. Easy enough to
gut the hand-held control and install a few relays in place of the
switches. Probably possible to skip the relays altogether and drive the
sense lines directly; have to trace the signals on the particular
controller, though. I'd use the PC serial port talking to a
microcontroller that actually did the interfacing. Hit the pre-Xmas
sales and you can probably get the hardware for practically nothing.
For something fancier, these guys (and others) http://www.hitecrcd.com /
have proportional RF controllers but AFAIK the stock items are all (?)
handheld as well. The joystick controls might be emulated by
microcontroller-driven DACs if the sticks are just pots. Kind of pricey
to void the warranty but way less than $50 M. Something like TI's
TLC5615 would be pretty easy to interface to a uC with an SPI
peripheral. I'd stick with the same, simple serial interface to the PC.
I kind of wish that I hadn't seen those catalogs. Neat toys! ;-)
The below tank (search ebay for "rc tank", scroll down the page
for a video of it running) should be very easy to control from a
computer and could probably support a wireless cam. The RC
transmitter looks like it is basically comprised of on/off
contacts that could be easily jumpered with NPN transistors for
external control via a computer. As far as computer control, web
based coutrol would probably be the easiest, and control via joy
stick or gamepad would involve somewhat more complex programming.
Video and control range might be an issue with the off the shelf
toy based setups.
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