Archive for May, 2010

Mech Warfare featured on WIRED Video!

Friday, May 21st, 2010

When we were out at Robogames 2010, the multimedia crew from WIRED Magazine showed up and hung out with us for a bit. They loved the Mech Warfare competition and asked if they could do some interviews with the competitors. Here is the result!

Robots Hunt for Lock Ness Monster

Friday, May 21st, 2010

How is that for an awesomely misleading post title? I must be spending too much time on DIGG lately.

We just learned about a really cool yearly underwater ROV competition that is put on by APASE (Arizona Promoters of Applied Science in Education). The contest is called NURC (The National Underwater Robotics Challenge) and this year the contest is “Quest For Nessie!” How fun!

The government of Scotland has hired you and your team to help find and tag the legendary Loch Ness Monster. Yes that’s right, the Loch Ness Monster! The Scottish Government says they know it exists for a fact now and need a professional robotics team to use an ROV to put a radio tag on it, as well as retrieve its egg from its nest.

Last years contest sounded fun too. It was called the Underwater Typewriter Repairman. Correction it was called Fire Under Ice and the winner was Underwater Typewriter Repairman. Here is a video from the winner:

More info:

When is the competition?
The competition will be held on June 11-13, 2010. The teams that make it to the finals will compete at night and their ROV should be able to provide its own lights. Finals will be from 8pm to 4 am.

Where will the event take place?
The event will be held at Chandler High School in Chandler, Arizona

Who may enter?
The competition is open to any home school, jr. high, high school, jr. college or university as well as private corporations or adult teams.  Teams may consist of combinations of students, industry mentors, faculty members and parents. Students must however be the ones competing in all the parts of the competition. Adults can be team members, but the students do all the competing at the competition. Private corporations or adults are the exception, unless they have students. Jr. high, high school, colleges and universities, and corporations will be scored separately as categories, but they will all compete in the same mission. All adult teams can enter and compete and will be scored against the universities.

Desktop Size Battle Bots Are Here!

Monday, May 17th, 2010


Have you ever wanted to own your very own battle bot? Now with the Viper from FingerTech Robotics you can own one today. With a build time of less then an hour, you can have your very own wedge battle bot that’s ready to smash the competition! The Viper comes with everything you need, but the batteries and the five thousand dollar price tag.

Great For:

  • - Parent Child project
  • - Classroom or after school project
  • - Boyscouts/Club activities
  • - Great Birthday party activity

Let me help you with that bolt sir

Monday, May 17th, 2010

Antonb has posted a noteworthy project in the TRC Forums. It is a 5DOF robot arm that uses his custom made “supermodified” servos.

“Supermodified controllers are direct replacement boards for the original servo electronics, that allow full PID speed and position control of the servo. Based on the ATMega 368P (fully Arduino compatible with half the footprint of Arduino nano and 4MHz faster) also allow for controlling 4 digital IOs, as well as 4 analog inputs.”

Antonb’s arm is so good that it can take a bolt from your hand and screw it into a nut flawlessly. If someone ever told me that this could be done with an arm built out of hobby servos I would have laughed. I’m not laughing now! I’m impressed.

Some Quick Stats:
- Absolute position feedback of 0.35 degrees
- adjustable PID
- magnetic encoders!
- Tactile Feedback

Open source code and schematics:

http://code.google.com/p/zosupermodified/

http://www.01mech.com/supermodified

*Also of note is the super clean workbench which I need to show to Andrew here…

Super Duper Mega Ginormous Arduino Section of Goodies!

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

The open source concept behind Arduino has been a huge winner in the DIY & hobbyist community. It is the little microcontroller that spawned ten thousand projects and it won our hearts over long ago. Seeing people innovate and create wild, fun, artistic, creative, inspired projects is what we live for here. We set out to create a resource for the ever growing community of Arduino users and filled it with all the goodies we could find. So…

Say hello to our new Ginormous Arduino Robotics Division.  When we do things here at Trossen Robotics we tend to do them over the top. It is probably because we are still yearning for love and acceptance deep down inside. Blame our parents. Rare float switches, Keychain Remote Switches, and a Huge Red Fire-All-Missiles-Button are just some of the cool things you will find in here.

To prove the point about the size of new division we decided to post the absurdly long JPG snapshot of the main section after the jump. Just look at it!  *The voices of angels may be heard
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Your Robot Ninja Can Now Rappel!

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

Does your Robot need to scale a high tower to save a Robot Princess? Need to raise the drawbridge to keep out unsightly suitors? The RoboWinch can help any lifting, lowering, winching, or dragging you need done up to 3lbs. Plus they come with an extra motor just in case you push this little guy to the limit!

The RoboWinch accepts a standard PWM signal for input, so you can use any of our servo controllers to operate it.  Man I wish I had one of these when I used to play with G.I. Joes. :)

Dynamixel Servos Are In :)

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

The Mother Load of Dynamixels. Just look at them!

The Mother Load of Dynamixels. Just look at them!

The Dynamixel servos have been hard to keep in stock. They just keep flying off the shelves. This is what happens when you can build amazingly cool stuff with parts. We have bumped up our stock to meet demand and wanted to let everyone know that they are all in again. Ex-106+ / RX-64 / RX-28

Don’t forget to check out our Brackets page as well which allow the serious robotics developer to build just about any kind of robot imaginable. You can buy a whole robot leg if your wallet is deep enough :O You saw Skynet here first!