The Creation of a low-cost, reliable platform for mobile robotics research
Author(s)Gilbert, Taylor Harrison
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.
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This work documents the planning process, design, fabrication, and integration of a low-cost robot designed for research on the problem of life-long robot mapping. The robotics platform used is the iRobot Create. This robot also employs the PrimeSensor, a sensor with the ability to provide a pixel-matched, colored depth field in real time. This sensor was later purchased by Microsoft and leveraged in their popular gaming device, the Microsoft Kinect. The robot has a powerful Acer Aspire 1830T-6651 laptop with an Intel Core i5 to perform processor-intensive, real-time image processing. The actual construction of the robot consisted of two phases: the physical integration of the components on a chassis and the software integration through the computer. The physical integration is mainly a central chassis made from laser-cut acrylic. This chassis is capable of securely holding the laptop computer in place and provides an elevated mount for the PrimeSensor. This mount has the ability to change the viewing angle of the sensor and lock that angle at 5' increments using a pin. The software integration was completed using open-source packages for the Robot Operating System (ROS) developed by Brown University and a not-for-profit company called OpenNI. These packages were installed on the onboard laptop and the ROS core functions running on the laptop provide the foundation to run new code on this testing platform. This robot is low in cost and provides a reliable, robust, and versatile platform for visionbased artificial intelligence research. The mapping software and vision algorithms developed on this platform will contribute to the development of more intelligent and meaningful vision capabilities for tomorrow's robots.
Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, June 2011."June 2011." Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 29).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology