We have two ABB IRB 140 stationary industrial robots. Their work
cell takes up about half of the lab space. They have motion about
6 axes, allowing them to reach any position within their range
any orientation. They use a variety of end effectors including
or 3-fingered grippers in conjunction with force-torque sensors
and quick tool changers. For more information, check out ABB's
There are two ABB S4C Controllers powering the IRB
140s. These giant processors take care of all functions required
in manipulating the robotic arms.
There are also three Cognex In-sight 1000 digital
cameras mounted around the workcell. They have vision recognition
software built in and upload data to a PC through ethernet cable.
For more information, check out Cognex's
The industrial robots use force-torque sensors from
ATI Automation. These allow the robots to sense impacts with their
surroundings by measuring the forces and torques acting on the payload
and end effector. The quick tool changers we use are also made by
ATI. Visit ATI's website
for more information.
The pneumatic grippers used to grab and manipulate
objects in the workcell were donated by Schunk
Precision Workholding Systems. In the lab there are 2-fingered
grippers like the one shown above as well as 3-fingered grippers.
Two ADS Pyro 1394 Firewire webcams are being used
on the mobile robot project. These cameras have a frame rate of
30 frames per second at a resolution of 640 x 480. They are 400
Mbits/second capable and offer the fastest streaming rate over the
web. For more information on these cameras, check out the ADS
Two new Compaq Presario Laptops are being used to
control the mobile robots. Each mobile robot carries a computer
on board to process the variety of sensor inputs and control outputs.
The computers have Cisco Wireless Ethernet cards and USB/ Firewire/
Serial/ Parallel Commuications.
New to the lab is an indexing table in position between
the two ABB IRB 140s. It is a 6-position, rotary, motor-driven indexing
table. It is 28 inches in diameter and has an accuracy of 60 arcseconds.
The indexing table was supplied by Advantage Conveyor, Inc. of Raleigh,
For use in the mobile robot project, Acroname donated
two BrainStem Modules. These devices help control the sensor inputs
on the mobile robots. For more information about BrainStem, visit
In the robotic control lab adjacent to the RAMA lab,
there is a pendulum robot, or pendubot supplied by Mechatronic Systems,
Inc. One can program the pendubot for swingup control, balancing,
regulation and tracking, identification, gain scheduling, disturbance
rejection, and friction compensation. For more information about
MTI's pendubot, visit their web site here.
There is a Feedback Ltd. Magnetic Levitation System
in the robotic control lab. This device can control the suspension
of a small metal ball in the air by way of electromagnetic
forces. An infrared sensor and receiver provide location feedback
while MATLAB and SIMULINK provide the necessary control. Learn
at Feedback's web site.
In the robotic control lab, we also have a rotary
inverted pendulum provided by Quanser Consulting. This machine is
capable of performing a variety of rotary control experiments using
MATLAB. The robot is operated through a series of control and feedback
servomotors. For more information, see Quanser's
A Montrac conveyor system surrounds the workcell in
the lab. Controlled by a series of pressurized valves, the sled
is powered by an electric motor that stops at two "stations,"
one on each side of the workcell. For more information, please visit