Dept. of Robotics & Automationat Luleå University of Technology

LuSAR - Luleå Semi-Autonomous Robot

LuSAR is the main lab robot at Luleå University. It has three wheels with steering on the front wheel and differential traction on the rear wheels. It's capable of traversing uneven terrain and can be used to test both indoor and outdoor navigation. 

The main sensor on the robot is an IBEO Ladar 2D scanning range measuring laser. This sensor allows the robot to see a profile of the environment, from which it can build a map and navigate. 

Some Projects

  • Navigation: The robot is capable of building a map of the environment using the laser. It can estimate its position in the map and continously update the map while moving around.

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  • Tele-operation: Tests has been performed teleoperating the robot over InterNet, with a radiolink to the robot. The operator is presented with a map of the environment containing overlaid rangescans aligned using the navigation system described above.
  • Autonomous wall following, and following behind a person (or another robot)
  • Gyro assisted dead reckoning. Studying how a gyro can improve the motion estimate when the decks are deformable.
 

The Laser

The laser measures distances by sending out short laser pulses sent in a narrow beam. It measures distance by measuring the time it takes the laser light to return. Thus working similarily to a radar or the sonar of a bat. 

A scanning mirror allows the laser to "see" everything in a 270 degree sector of the plane. It can detect most surfaces, but mirrors and windows can cause trouble. 

 

Lab Course Project

The robot has been used in a very successful lab course were the students programmed a user interface for teleoperating the robot. The interfaces were written in Java, with a dozen groups each doing their own interface. 
To facilate testing the groups had access to a simulator for the robot.
The course were given by David Carr  at CDT.
 

Created by Johan Forsberg.
Last edited 1997-09-01 by Johan Forsberg.

http://www.sm.luth.se/csee/ra/Robots/LuSAR.html