One of our early prototypes was built as a senior university project. It is a small unmanned ground vehicle inspired on U.S. army’s MarcBot.
The requirements were that it would be a low cost remote operated sensor platform that was able to overcome rough terrain and at the same time be small enough to carry.
More than “just” a camera on wheels it had also to send sensor data back to the operator in a reliable and secure way.
The vehicle should be equipped also with a navigation system such as GPS in order to know the current position and in case of lost communication do is best to come back “home”.
The development time given was 6 months so time was crucial and we had to keep it simple and using mostly off the shelf products.
So we come up with the following specifications:
- Mechanical arm based on hobby servos
- RC 4×4 crawler chassis
- .net microframework compatible board
- WiFi communications
- Wireless camera
- Gas sensor
- Temperature sensor
- Laptop base station