Description


It's 2018 and there are still no small automatic robots scurrying around and doing all the mundane maintenance tasks. Why? I think we have been focusing on the wrong things.

Quadruped robots are the most promising designs in the nearest robotics history. Wheeled robots are simple and efficient, but only when the environment has been specially prepared for them, with flat floors, wide clearances and no obstacles. Just look at your roomba. On the other hand, bipedal robots could in theory get everywhere where a human can get, but in practice they are still horribly innefficient, expensive and prone to failure. Quadrupeds fill the middle ground between those. With four legs, they are capable of careful statically stable walking, able to stop at any moment without falling down. They are also capable of highly efficient and fast dynamic gaits, and even jumping. At the same time they are much cheaper and more robust than hexapods and robots with more legs.

However, building a quadruped robot that would be more than just a simple toy — a robot capable of proper walking, with at least three degrees of freedom per leg is still complex and expensive for a hobbyist. That is where Kubik M0 comes in. It's designed to be cheap, simple to build and easy to extend. It is a base for experimenting with walking robots — a starting point, making it easier to research them. In it basic form still works as a toy, but because you can program it with Python, attach additional sensors and effectors, and also, with simple decoration, make it look like any spider robot you've seen in a game or movie — it becomes a learning and experimenting platform.


Components


  • 100×100mm PCB

  • 12×SG90 microservo

  • ATSAMD21E18A-MU microcontroller

  • LIS3DH accelerometer

  • MCP73831 battery charger

  • PAM8301 audio amplifier

  • SMT-0927-S-12-R speaker

  • AP2112K-3.3TRG1 voltage regulator

  • CR123A battery holder

  • 16340 lithium battery

  • 2×MBR120 shottky diode

  • resistors, capacitors, switch, usb socket, LED, male pin headers


Instructions


The plan for dissimination is to sell it as a kit on Tindie — you get a soldered PCB that also contains the mechanical elements, plus screws. You have to get the battery and the servos yourself.


The assembly will be easy: you just have break off all the mechanical partsfrom the main PCB, use the screws to attach the servo horns to them, use hot glue to stick 8 of the servos together, and assemple the whole thing by putting the horns on the servos. Then plug the servos into thepin headers, and you are ready for callibrating the robot.

The software, in form of Python files, is simply copied to the USB disk drive that appears when the robot is connected. You can edit those files directly, and the robot will restart every time it detects a change.

More information about the project at Hackaday.io.

Jun 28,2018
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