Now offering all cad files, construction and tutorial manual, and bill of materials for finalized RObot design as a reward level...
The RObot is the culmination of over a year of designing, optimizing, testing, and construction of a completely novel robotic platform. It is a device geared towards reconnaissance, search and rescue, military applications, and inspections of commercial products. The versatility of the RObot allows a small robotic vehicle to conquer nearly any situation. Whether, it is flying to the top of a roof and beyond to send valuable aerial photographs or driving along a catastrophe site relaying high definition and zoomed in stable shots, the RObot is up to the challenge. The project started as an undergraduate research project to create a really cool toy and developed into what we believe is the future of unmanned vehicles. With enough payload capacity to nearly double the weight of the vehicle, the applications are endless. These could include the implementation of various sensors, the transport of goods weighing up to several pounds to hard to reach locations, delivery of communication devices, and more This vehicle will carry a camera allowing for first person view (FPV) control and it can provide live transmission of video and data.
The initial RObot was a successful prototype with drive times of several hours depending on battery size and flight times of 5-10 minutes. The upgrades being created in the final product include motor, battery, and propeller combinations that will double the thrust and flight time while sustaining the drive times. The servo driven turning capabilities will greatly increase the efficiency of the ground transport over skid steering while producing more precise control.
The RObot is in its final phase now as a graduate project to create the final optimized system. The project is already being printed and is just awaiting further funding for the completion of construction, component purchasing, and more printed parts. All work has been under the supervision of MIT PhD Dr. Paul Ro, and will conclude by December 14th.
UPDATE #1 October 14, 2012
What an amazing and overwhelming day! Less than 20 hours and we've reached the goal! I love my project and have really looked forward to launching for quite a while now, but I never would've imagined the incredible response.
First, I want to say thank you so very much to everyone who has pledged their support and I look forward to sharing the progress on my project.
Second, let's not stop here! I want this RObot to be amazing and more help means better equipment. I want to turn the RObot into an indestructible and powerful tool for industry. To do that, I need more support. I need better supplies, better components, and better materials. This could go from a great project to a device ubiquitous in commercial industries for inspection, reconnaissance, and search and rescue. Better materials would make it stronger, lighter, faster, and more durable. More support can add important sensors, better cameras, and more precise control. Finally, I want to patent this idea! I'm not expecting to raise the money to cover a patent, but a better product will gain me more backers as the life of the RObot progresses.
And let's not forget the fun part of this project! More support means more printers so I can get your rewards out to you faster!Update #2
This has been an amazing experience and I continue to receive messages with great ideas for improving the RObot, generous offers to help the project, and the amount of hits on the project has been incredible. I want to send out a special thank you to Mikro from Aeroquad! He has generously offered to provide a flight board for the RObot and support from his website at www.aeroquad.com I have used his boards on many previous quadcopters and the upgraded AQ32 will allow the RObot to realize its fullest potential. I have been in contact with some different companies to look into advanced materials for critical components and there are some really exciting possibilities out there. These alterations would not change the design, but greatly enhance the performance of the vehicle within the current design... Please continue to spread the word as these exciting alternatives will not be possible without more funding! Again, thank you everyone! This has been a blast and I look forward to keeping everyone updated on the RObot's progress!
Risks and challenges
The greatest challenge in completion of the project is funding the final phase to allow for the purchase of the electrical components and additional 3d printers. While I currently own one 3d printer and have access to another, the amount of time necessary to print all the parts is extensive. The initial RObot was already successfully tested and the current design is improving the power towards thrust and driving. Additionally, a steering mechanism is replacing the skid steering utilized in the first design to allow for greater control and a tighter turning radius.
The fulfillment of rewards from the first 3 pledge levels contain no risk whatsoever as they are already in place and ready to create. The fulfillment of the larger rewards can't be guaranteed to be delivered in December, but will be dependent on the volume of the larger pledges.
As a general guideline, the regular quadcopter will take 2 days to print, construct, and test.
The parts for those pledging at the level for the printed components of the RObot will take about 2 days to print and an extra day to build for those pledging for the assembled mechanical system.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (10 days)