Nidona Robotics in partnership with Got Robots? is pleased to announce Blader, the third generation of the Nidona Robotic Platform, a range of robots that share similar cababilities and are all code compatible. The robot can walk, skate and dance and has a number of expressive behaviors to make programming fun.
The Blader Robot Platform represents the culmination of over a decade of research and develepment into increasing the energy efficiency and capability of a walking robot. It is an iterative evolution of a novel leg linkage design that utilizes an inline geometry when the leg is placed on the ground, resulting in a net zero force on the main elbow joint motors supporting the mass of the robot. This allows the robot to use smaller, lighter motors and results in an unusually efficient robot - it takes no energy to stand still, and when walking on an even surface, the motors do not need to support the robot
Nidona has taken its design and shrunk it down with small, inexpensive motors. The new, low cost kit robot is available in two editions, a Hexapod with 6 legs and a Quadruped with 4 legs. Built from laser cut aluminum and 3D printed parts, each leg uses 3 Robotis XL-320 Actuators providing smooth and precise control, allowing for highly detailed and flexible motions. Parts of the kit can be 3D printed in school Maker Spaces to both save cost and provide student projects. The robot runs on a Raspberry Pi Zero W.
The Blader robot is uniquely suitable to High School Robotics programs due to the linkage design used in the legs. The linkages are comprised of a series of triangles, so only mathematics required to solve the Inverse Kinematics for leg positioning is Trigonometry, meaning high school students can fully program all aspects of the robot.
In addition, the proprietary leg linkage mechanically locks when the leg is down, so the robot does not use battery power to counter gravity when standing or walking. This results in a very long battery life (3 hours during normal usage) compared to other walking robots, allowing multiple classes to use the robot without downtime for charging.
The robot runs an internal web server so any device with a web browser can be used to program and interact with the robot - tablets, Chromebooks, laptops and even phones. Programming in Blockly and Python are supported, with full ROS compatibilty. A full curriculum is in development.
Please contact Nidona if you are interested in learning more about the Blader Robot Platform.