Base control of the modular plantation robot elWObot

Technologies in the field of mobile machinery are advancing rapidly. Today there are already different systems, that help to simplify the use of such machines and make it more secure and efficient. And this is really necessary to meet the high requirements on the quality of work, with the simultaneously predominant pressure of time. In agriculture, for example, you will find assistance systems, that take over the steering of the vehicles with help of GPS and therefore help the driver to concentrate on the work of the implement. A long-term goal is also to develop vehicles that are able to do their work all autonomously. Efforts of this kind are described by the term “mobile automation”. Because there is also a big demand for similar systems in the field of pomiculture and viniculture the chair Agricultural System Technology of Technical University Dresden, the University of Applied Sciences Osnabrück and the University of Applied Sciences Geisenheim are developing the autonomous plantation robot elWObot with electric drives. In this project, the Robot Makers GmbH is responsible for the base control of the robot.

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Off-road Platform VIONA

The robot VIONA (Vehicle for Intelligent Off-road NAvigation) is an agile platform for applications in rough terrain. The vehicle has the dimensions of a small car and weighs about 700kg. The electric drive consists of four single wheel motors with 1.2kW power each. Front and rear axis can be steered separately. That way, complex driving manoeuvres like crab steering and double-Ackermann steering can be achieved.

Mechanics, electronics and control software have been realised by the Robot Makers GmbH. The rollout took place in October 2012 in the context of the “Sciences Night 2012” in Kaiserslautern.

Outdoor Plattform VIONA

The outdoor platform VIONA is perfectly suited for off-road use, thanks to its robust design and engine

Technical Data

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Attributes Description
width 1400 mm (most widest part: bumper)
length 2400 mm
height 940 mm
weight ca. 650 kg
payload 200 kg
track width 1100 mm
wheel base 1200 mm
wheel diameter 770 mm (off-road tyres on 16″ alloy wheel rims)
chassis clearance ~ 250 mm
spring deflection 115 mm (-45 mm up to +70 mm)
board voltage 48 V
energy source 8 deep-cycle batteries with each 12 V 55 Ah (5280 Wh)
running time about 4 hours
controller Generic Control Box
interface Ethernet TCP/IP
protocols ROS (ros.org)
Finroc® (finroc.org)

Video

Wassererkennung mit dem Aqua Visor

Concept Study AquaVisor

Development of a special camera system for the detection of water surfaces in the context of autonomous navigation of mobile robots. In this project, a demonstrator with embedded electronics and integrated image preprocessing was realized.

On behalf of the German Army the demonstrator was evaluated in the context of the study “Water Detection” by the Robotics Research Lab at the University of Kaiserslautern.

Detection of water surfaces with the Aqua Visor

The Aqua Visor is used for the detection of water surfaces

Der Claw Cleaner Eco der Firma MK Nutztierhygiene

Control technology for Animal Care

Health is a central topic in animal farming, as product quality is directly linked to the well-being of the animals. Prophylactic measures can conveniently be achieved on any farm with animal care solutions by MK Nutztierhygiene. The latest generation of systems is driven by Robot Makers’ innovative technology. Precise sensing and intelligent control allows for an even more selective application to save disinfectants and water.

The ongoing development is presented at Euro Tier 2012 in Hannover by our partner company MK Nutztierhygiene.

Der Claw Cleaner Eco der Firma MKS Nutztierhygiene

"Autonomer Mobilebagger" (AMoBA)

Control of an Excavator Arm

In this project, the arm of a bucket excavator was equipped with a computer-controllable interface. In the context of the project, a control system for hydraulic cylinders was developed. Furthermore, algorithms for the distributed control approaches were designed and optimized for a Volvo bucket excavator.

On the basis of the electrified prototype the Robotics Research Lab at the University of Kaiserslautern conducts research in the domains environment recognition and autonomous landscaping.

"Autonomer Mobilebagger" (AMoBA)