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Roombots

Modular robotics for adaptive and self-organizing furniture that moves, self-assembles, and self-reconfigures. Our dream is to provide multi-functional modules that are merged with the furniture and that lay users and engineers can combine for multiple applications.

Key features:
  • Controlled from centralized PC; commands over serial port on Bluetooth
  • 3 degrees of freedom and 2 active connection mechanisms per module
  • Local sensors to detect docking position
  • 10 connection surfaces per module
  • 2 LED rings per module for visual feedback
  • Extensible with specialized elements (Universal Gripper, LED spotlight, camera + on-board PC)
  • One module can lift another module and up to 500 g as payload in the end effector
  • Easy-to-use GUI (based on Unity; only visualization, no physics)
  • Position, speed or Central-Pattern-Generator (CPG) control
  • Off-grid (free) and on-grid locomotion
Possible applications:
  • Rapid prototyping of robots by coordinating multiple modules
  • Automatic construction of shapes or objects
  • Smart moving manipulator or spotlight
  • Novel interface to control and coordinate multiple modules at the same time

Technical specifications

Outer dofs specs:31.5 RPM (no load), 8.4 Nm (nominal)
Inner gearbox reduction:366:1 (custom made)
Overall dimensions:110x110x220 mm (4.3?x4.3?x8.7?)
Weight:1.7 kg (3.1 lb)
Degrees of freedom:3 (continuous rotational)
Number of connection surfaces:10 (active or passive)
Active connection type:4-way symmetrical gender-less mechanical latches
Energy source:4-cell LiPo battery, 1200 mAh. Autonomy ~1 hour
Communication:Bluetooth
Inner dof specs:20.4 RPM (no load), 4.3 Nm (nominal)
Outer motors:Maxon RE 25
Inner motor:Maxon RE-max 24
Outer gearboxes reduction:305:1 (custom made)

Access information

Corresponding infrastructureÉcole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne
BioRobotics Lab
LocationRoute Cantonale, 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland
Unit of accessWorking day

Additional information