Development and testing of radio modules for robot communication
The Biorobotics Laboratory works on bio-inspired robots to design new control methods for robotics as well as novel robots capable of agile locomotion in complex environments. Those robots, such as AmphiBot, Salamandra robotica, Pleuroboot or Envirobot, are amphibious robots that cannot simply be connected to a controller using wires and hence must be radio controlled. Moreover, they go further and further from the operator and thus need longer range radio communication. Furthermore, they are collecting ore and more data that must be sent back to a terminal almost in real-time, thus they need a fast and reliable ratio link with a high data rate.
The current modules that are used in the lab are based on a more than 13 years old chip, the nRF905 which is now outperformed by other chips on the market. New requirements have emerged such as higher data rate and longer range and better reliability.
The aim of the project is to first identify the requirements and then compare the available chips and choose one transceiver. An evaluation protocol should be designed for a controlled experiment using commercially available modules of the transceiver. Then, a printed circuit board must be designed and manufactured and tested using the same protocol as for the module, allowing one to make a comparison between the designed modules and the commercially available modules.
Screenshot of the GUI application
Photo of the final PCB