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Modular Robotics

Student Presentation
Christoph Schnfeld
8schoenf@informatik.uni-hamburg.de
07.12.2009
Table of Contents
Definition
Why Modular Robots some Facts
Motivation and Inspiration
Disadvantages
Application areas
Space exploration
Telepario
Bucket of Stuff
History
Current Systems PolyBot
Challenges and Solutions
Future
References
Definition

Self-Reconfiguring Modular Robotics, Modular


self-reconfiguring robotic systems or self-
reconfigurable modular robots are autonomous
kinematic machines with variable morphology.
Beyond conventional actuation, sensing and
control typically found in fixed-morphology
robots, self-reconfiguring robots are also able to
deliberately change their own shape by rearranging
the connectivity of their parts, in order to adapt to
new circumstances, perform new tasks, or recover
from damage.
Why Modular Robots?

Self-reconfiguring
flexibility Variable morphology

Low-budget product
reproducibility Small components(robustness)
A lot of Entities

connectivity Entities are connected


Motivation and Inspiration

Economic
Functional Advantages
Advantages

Complex
Disassemble machines out
Potentially Parts are
More adaptive and of mass-
more robust interchangable
reassemble produced
modules
Motivation and Inspiration(2)

Single modular robot is inferior Advantages are only apparent


in performance to any single when considering multiple tasks
custom robot tailored for a that would normally require a
specific task. set of different robots.
Disadvantages

Disadvantages
Increased mechanical
Performance tradeoff and computational
complexities
Application areas

Space exploration
Telepario
Bucket of stuff
Space exploration

Space
Missions
Highly
Unforeseen volume and
Self Repair
Situations mass
constrained
Space exploration(2)
Telepario

Telepario

Physical,three- Mimic the space and


No need for virtual
dimensinal replicas of apprearance of a person
reality gear
people or objects or object
Bucket of Stuff
Bucket of Stuff

Consumers of
the future Inspired by
Modules can
have a applications
Long term do any task by
container of and biological
vision assuming the
self- systems(cells,
shape needed
reconfigurable amino acids)
modules
History
System Class, DOF Author Year
Stochastic-3D Lattice, 0 3D White, Zykov, Lipson (Cornell) 2005
Molecubes Chain, 1 3D Zykov, Mytilinaios, Lipson 2005
(Cornell)
Prog. Parts Lattice, 0 2D Klavins, (U. Washington) 2005
Miche Lattice, 0 3D Rus et al., (MIT) 2006
GZ-I Modules Chain, 1 3D Zhang & Gonzalez-Gomez (U. 2006
Hamburg, UAM)
Evolve Chain, 2 3D Chang Fanxi, Francis (NUS) 2008
Odin Hybrid, 3 3D ?, Modular Robotics Research 200?
Lab, USD
History(2)

History and state of the art


Roots lies in the 1970s
Basic concept of the connection mechanism was introduced in
the late 1980s
First lattice reconfiguration and chain based system in the early
1990s
The MTRAN II and III systems(chain+lattice)
Able to achieve tasks more easily(chain)
reconfiguration like a lattice system
New Efforts in stochastic self-assembly and the look to issues in
developing millions of modules
Current Systems
PolyBot
Locomotion, climbing, manipulation, manual and self-reconfiguration

Polypod
For studying robot locomotion in general

Telecube
Each face can expand or retract and connect or disconnect from neighboring
modules

Proteo
Rhombic dodecahedron, reconfiguring by rolling over egdes, only
simulated so far

Digital Clay
Similar to Proteo, but without actuators, used as a 3D tactile user interface
PolyBot
PolyBot G2 with 24 modules in a four-legged spider configuration.
Challenges and Solutions

Application

Planning
and Hardware
control design
Challenges and Solutions(2)

Grand Challenges
Demonstration of a system with many
units
Robosphere
Self replication
Ultimate Construction
Biofilter analogy
Future?

Nano Robots?
Robots in human body?
Autonomic self-driving cars?
Robots as mass-ware?
References
www.wikipedia.de
www.parc.com

For your interest:

http://www.modrobotics.com/
http://modular.mmmi.sdu.dk/wiki/Main_Page
http://www.youtube.com