Team Delft APC 2016 Progress

Team Delft has qualified as one of the 16 finalist teams for the Amazon Picking Challenge 2016. The team is a joint effort of the startup Delft Robotics (Kanter van Deurzen a.o.) and TU Delft Robotics Institute (Carlos Hernandez Corbato a.o.), supported by the RoboValley initiative (www.robovalley.com)

The goal of the Amazon challenge is “to strengthen the ties between the industrial and academic robotic communities and promote shared and open solutions to some of the big problems in unstructured automation. In order to spur the advancement of these fundamental technologies”. There will be two parallel competitions: the Pick Task, and the Stow Task. For the Pick Task, target items for an Amazon order have to be removed from a standard shelf in Amazon warehouses, and placed into a tote. The Stow Task is the reverse: target items have to be taken from a tote and stowed into the bins of the shelf. These tasks involve challenges in object recognition, grasping, dexterous manipulation or motion planning.

Team Delft has been developing since January an industrial grade robotic system for the challenge. It involves a 7 degree-of-freedom Motoman robot mounted on a rail, courtesy of Yaskawa (sponsor). Ensenso cameras from sponsor Imagining Development Systems will feed high quality 3D images to a vision pipeline for object recognition and localization using Deep Learning techniques. The team is fully committed to the ROS-Industrial initiative. ROS and ROS-Industrial components for motion planning, robot control, grasping and PointCloud processing will be integrated into a fault-tolerant control architecture for the robot.

Application video of Team Delft to qualify as finalists for the Amazon Picking Challenge.

The Amazon Picking Challenge will be held in conjunction with RoboCup 2016 in Leipzig, Germany from 30 June to 3 July 2016.

You can follow Team Delft at: @teamdelft_apc

For more information about the Amazon Picking Challenge, please visit http://amazonpickingchallenge.org/

Simulated Robot Agility Competition Update

Submission courtesy of William Harrison, NIST

This is a short update for those who have interest in participating in the International Agile Robotics for Industrial Automation Competition (ARIAC). Here are some things you should be aware of:

  • We invite you to attend the Conference on Automation Science and Engineering (CASE) (August 21-24), where we will have the official competition kickoff. All of the specific information about the conference will be presented at a full day workshop. We will have academic, industrial and government speakers the first part of the day. The second part of the day will be tutorials and training to give you the best jump start on learning the software and tools necessary for the competition.
  • If you can't make our workshop, we are holding a live webinar so you can still take advantage of the talks, training, and tutorials.
  • The actual competition is expected to be held in early 2017 in the cloud, so no travel is necessary.
  • Winners will be showcased at CASE 2017

If you are interested in Speaking at our workshop there are still spots available. Speakers who make it to CASE, will have the option of being listed as cosponsors of the competition. If you would like to speak or be involved in some other way please contact us.

Recap: ROS-I Training Spring 2016

Spring ROS-Industrial Basic Developers Training classes gave participants an opportunity to learn new skills through hands-on training. The ROS-Industrial Developers’ Training Class was held April 6 - 8, 2016 at SwRI, in San Antonio, Texas where the ROS-I Consortium Americas is based.

On April 6 the class reviewed ROS packages, parameters, topics, messages, launch files and URDF's. The first day ended with a tour of a SwRI labs and campus where the participants were able to see several ROS applications as well as get a better idea of Southwest Research Institute facilities. The rest of training took developers through foundational robot manipulation (with an introduction to Descartes and other path planners) and perception with a multi-option lab day. The lessons can be found here. Participants from 3M, ABB, Bastian, IDEXX, John Deere, JR Automation, Smart Robotics (Japan) and one student from the Make School attended. Check out the pictures (below).

Many thanks for Jonathan Meyer, Levi Armstrong, Shaun Edwards, and Christina Gomez from SwRI for this year's training.

students independently walking through an online exercise while jonathan clarifies a point

students independently walking through an online exercise while jonathan clarifies a point

all students bring their own laptops with a virtual machine that is set up and ready to go; levi approaches a student with a question

all students bring their own laptops with a virtual machine that is set up and ready to go; levi approaches a student with a question

The full class with  Swri ROS-Industrial support staff included

The full class with  Swri ROS-Industrial support staff included

Industrial Calibration Library Updates

The ROS-I Industrial Calibration Library is the result of an internally funded SwRI project and has the following capabilities:

  • Intrinsic camera calibration
  • Extrinsic 2D/3D sensor calibration for
    • Arrays of heterogeneous sensors
    • Sensor(s) on moving/non-moving frames
    • Coordination with robot motion
  • Accuracy field estimation

Check out two recent videos (below). The first is a short overview of the Industrial Calibration Library. It concludes with an invitation for others to use the library for their applications. Our second video is an example use case of extrinsic calibration between a robot and a David sensor, courtesy of Victor Lamoine from Institut Maupertuis. Let us know how you are using the Industrial Calibration Library!

Get the Legal and Economic Scoop for OSS in Robotics & Automation

As the technical value of Open-Source Software (OSS) is gaining acceptance in Industrial Robotics and Automation, our daily interaction with the key stakeholders operating in this field (OEMs, system integrators, startups, end users) has made us realize that the limiting factor to its further diffusion lies elsewhere. If Linux is a widely used and respected choice in IT, what is preventing open-source robotics frameworks to becoming accepted to the same extent in our field?

In our experience, current concerns are mostly centered around:

  • Legal aspects: what are the implications in terms of liability of using OSS in my products, installations, and plants? How do the different open-source licensing schemes work?
  • Economics concerns: can I build a sustainable business model over Open Source? Is my intellectual property at risk?

To help answer these questions and to support potential adopters of OSS in their decision process, Fraunhofer IPA and euRobotics AISBL is offering an event on April 19-20 in Stuttgart, Germany featuring selected speakers providing insight from the technical, economic and legal domains. It is a one-of-a-kind chance to get a comprehensive overview of these aspects and, even more importantly, get answers to your questions and voice your concerns.

For more information, including a detailed program and registration info, please refer to the following webpage.

I look forward to welcoming you in Stuttgart!

Your RIC-EU Program Manager,
Mirko Bordignon

Robotic Product Singulation Testbed

We are excited to post our 50th ROS-I video: Robotic Product Singulation Testbed. This project was demonstrated during the Annual Meeting and is a collaborative development between ABB and SwRI to create a commercial product for warehouse automation. It highlights that, with some optimization, ROS-I applications can exhibit fast cycle times, without sacrificing the intelligence afforded by ROS. A scale demonstration of this technology will be on display next week at MODEX 2016, booth MA 957 (Baldor/ABB).

RIC-Americas Meeting Recap (Part 1 - March 3)

Note: Part 2 of the RIC-Americas Recap will cover events that occurred on March 4.

The ROS-Industrial Consortium Americas annual meeting was held March 3-4 at SwRI's headquarters in San Antonio, TX. March 3 events included an introduction to SwRI, 16 lab demonstrations, a keynote presentation about the ways that ROS is adding intelligence to a five-story tall mobile robotic aircraft depainting system, and an introduction to the ROS-Industrial Consortium. More than 50 people attended representing a cross section of ROS-Industrial stakeholders including automation equipment OEMs, end users, researchers, and government. During the demonstrations, the noise of numerous discussions gave the event a palpable buzz. While still relatively young, we heard a number of attendees remark that ROS-Industrial has momentum. 

Special thanks to our demonstration teams and presenters:

ROS/ROS-I Demonstrations:

  1. Autonomous Vehicle Test Rides. Chris Mentzer, Kris Kozak, Mark Alban, Ed Venator, SwRI.
  2. Large-scale Mobile Robotic Laser Depainting. Clay Flannigan and Michael Rigney, SwRI.
  3. Descartes Constrained Cartesian
    Motion Planner. Christina Gomez, SwRI.
  4. Dual Arm Mobile Manipulation. Andrew
    Sharp, UT Austin NRG.
  5. Euler Mobile Order Fulfillment. Jorge Nicho, SwRI.
  6. FlexGUI. Trygve Thomessen, PPM AS.
  7. Heavy Equipment Simulator (not ROS,
    but still cool). Susan Porter, SwRI.
  8. Human-centered Teleoperation for
    High-precision Tasks aka “Thread the
    Needle”. Karl Kruusamäe, UT Austin
    NRG.
  9. Intrinsic Calibration. Chris Lewis, SwRI.
  10. Package Singulation. Shaun Edwards,
    SwRI.
  11. Ragnar 2D Vision/Replication. Alex
    Goins, SwRI.
  12. Ragnar Demonstration. Preben Hjornet,
    Blue WorkForce.
  13. Robotic Blending. Jonathan Meyer,
    SwRI.
  14. Scan-N-Plan for CAD-Free Painting.
    Michael Blanton, SwRI.
  15. STOMP Free-space Motion Planner. Levi
    Armstrong, SwRI.
  16. Thunder Motion Planner. Dave
    Coleman, CU Boulder.

Presentations:

  • Introduction to SwRI. Paul Evans, SwRI.
  • Space Science. Philip Valek, SwRI.
  • Large Robots Need Smart Controls. Jeremy Zoss, SwRI.
  • Introduction to the ROS-Industrial Consortium. Paul Hvass, SwRI.
Scan-N-Plan for On-The-Fly Robotic Blending Demonstration workcell.

Scan-N-Plan for On-The-Fly Robotic Blending Demonstration workcell.

Explaining the Robotic Blending Process.

Explaining the Robotic Blending Process.

Blue Workforce Ragnar pick and place demonstration.

Blue Workforce Ragnar pick and place demonstration.

Ragnar 2D vision/Replication Demonstration.

Ragnar 2D vision/Replication Demonstration.

Dual arm Mobile Manipulation.

Dual arm Mobile Manipulation.

Package Singulation.

Package Singulation.

 Intrinsic calibration.

 Intrinsic calibration.

Thunder Motion Planner.

Thunder Motion Planner.

FlexGUI Demonstration.

FlexGUI Demonstration.

FLEXGUI runs from any web Browser, even a smart phone!

FLEXGUI runs from any web Browser, even a smart phone!

Discussion about the STOMP Motion Planner.

Discussion about the STOMP Motion Planner.

Close up of the sTOMP Planner.

Close up of the sTOMP Planner.

Human-Centered Teleoperation for High Precision Tasks: Note the voice and gesture interface.

Human-Centered Teleoperation for High Precision Tasks: Note the voice and gesture interface.

Another view of the Teleoperation Demo.

Another view of the Teleoperation Demo.

Scan-N-Plan for CAD-Free Painting.

Scan-N-Plan for CAD-Free Painting.

Euler Mobile manipulator Demonstration.

Euler Mobile manipulator Demonstration.

Participants took turns riding in SwRI's ROS-enabled autonomous vehicles.

Participants took turns riding in SwRI's ROS-enabled autonomous vehicles.

One vehicle navigated a slalom course while the other drove over a mix of paved and off-road Terrain.

One vehicle navigated a slalom course while the other drove over a mix of paved and off-road Terrain.

ROS-Industrial Training April 6-8, 2016

Southwest Research Institute is hosting a ROS-Industrial Training Class April 6 – 8, 2016 in San Antonio Texas.

The classroom portion is similar to the training held last year with the same curriculum and lab option for Descartes; a more detailed agenda can be found at the ROS-I website. Please bring a laptop to the class with the ROS-I training Virtual Machine pre-installed . This class is geared toward individuals with a programming background who seek to learn to compose their own ROS nodes. Day 1 will focus on basic/introductory ROS concepts. Day 2 will examine motion planning using MoveIt! as well as the Descartes planner and Perception concepts. Day 3 offers a lab programming exercise (with a choice of):
• Simple Perception Lab
• Simple MoveIt! Application
• Simple Descartes Application.
• Pick and Place Application
Registration is now open: http://rosindustrial.org/training-registration
Book your hotel by March 22 to receive the discounted room rate! Details can be found at the event website.

Google Summer of Code 2016

This Summer, ROS-Industrial will be participating in the Google Summer of Code (GSoC) under the Open Source Robotics Foundation (OSRF) umbrella.

GSoC is a great way for students to participate in open source projects and get paid. It's also a great opportunity to get some work done on an open source project and grow our community. ROS-Industrial has had several successful GSoC projects in the past and many of the students continue on as members of our community.

If you are an interested student, or know of one, please check out our idea page: http://wiki.osrfoundation.org/gsoc16.

Students have until March 25, 2016, to submit proposals for these ideas to GSoC. More details on the timeline can be found here: https://developers.google.com/open-source/gsoc/timeline .

I encourage students who wish to participate to reach out (swri-ros-pkg-dev@googlegroups.com) with any questions or ideas they might have about suggested projects. For GSoC rules, check out: https://developers.google.com/open-source/gsoc/rules

Looking forward to being overloaded with proposals...

-Shaun Edwards

FlexGui by PPM AS offers an open-source intuitive interface for robot control

Following the announcement made at the last RIC-EU Members Meeting, PPM AS released a significant part of its FlexGui software package as open-source. FlexGui, which is now part of the ROS-Industrial project, is an easy-to-configure interface originally developed for the control panel of Nachi robots. Its latest release runs on any browser-equipped device, including industrial PCs and tablets, making it also suitable for remote supervision. ROS-integration makes it now possible to control through FlexGui the wide range of platforms supported by ROS, and its factory designer functionality makes it appealing for production scenarios rich of sensors and other networked devices, such as those envisioned by the Industrie 4.0 initiative.

In case you missed the FlexGui demo at the last RIC-EU event held at Fraunhofer IPA in January, you can hear the presentation by Laszlo Nagy from PPM AS given during the last Community Meeting. Click here for the recording. PPM AS will be present at the RIC-Americas Annual Meeting.

NIST Launches National Competition to Make Robots More Agile

Cross-Posted from NIST Intelligent Systems Division Press Release

Manufacturers, robot suppliers and researchers, here’s your chance to get in on the ground floor of an upcoming national competition intended to help make robots handier and nimbler performers on the factory floor.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is launching ARIAC—the Agile Robotics for Industrial Automation Competition, a joint effort with the IEEE Conference on Automation Science and Engineering. Now in the planning stages, this first-ever, simulation-based competition aims to inspire applications of the latest advances in artificial intelligence and other technologies to solve the challenge of making robots more capable, versatile and collaborative, as well as easier to program.

Click to continue reading on the NIST website.

Editor's note: We encourage contestants to utilize ROS-Industrial open source software for their development efforts. In particular, the Industrial MoveIt! package may be helpful for motion planning.

Robot challenged to demonstrate its dexterity on NIST test artifacts. The new ARIAC competition will focus on agility—how well robots can perform a diverse set of tasks and how quickly they can be re-tasked.Photo Credit: NIST/D. Russell

Robot challenged to demonstrate its dexterity on NIST test artifacts. The new ARIAC competition will focus on agility—how well robots can perform a diverse set of tasks and how quickly they can be re-tasked.Photo Credit: NIST/D. Russell

ROS Bridges for Common Field Busses

Hardware interfaces are particularly important for any future integration of ROS-I with production systems. During 2015, we noted four new repositories emerged that span the range of prominent industrial field busses:

• CANOPEN™: CANOPEN is a fieldbus with origins in automotive applications (CAN), but applied to automation. We are grateful for the efforts of Mathias Lüdtke and Florian Weisshardt from Fraunhofer IPA for the ros_ canopen package.
• EtherNet/IP™: EtherNet/IP is an Ethernet-based real-time communication bus standard that was created by Allen-Bradley (Rockwell Automation). Thank you ClearPath Robotics for developing and releasing a ROS driver for EtherNet/IP.
• EtherCAT™: Probably the first fieldbus supported in ROS for the PR2, EtherCAT is an Ethernet-based realtime communication bus standard that was created by Beckhoff Automation. We appreciate Intermodalics for maintaining the EtherCAT package for ROS.
• PROFINET™: PROFINET, an open automation standard and part of IEC 61158 is fully compatible with all the features of standard Ethernet, and also capable of real-time performance. We recognize the efforts of package developer Frantisek Durovsky from the Technical University of Kosice in Slovakia along with his mentor Shaun Edwards (SwRI), the financial support of Google Summer of Code program, and technical support from Siemens.

Detailed Schedule for the ROS-I Consortium Americas Meeting Released

For full details visit the event page.

Register now!

Thursday, March 3 (Public):

Time Description Host/Presentor
1220 Shuttle Pickup at Hyatt Regency Hill Country
1230-1300 Registration
1300-1315 Welcome – Intro to SwRI Paul Hvass
1315-1345 Lab Tour: Space Science Space Science Staff
1345-1415 Lab Tour: Unmanned Systems Chris Mentzer
1415-1445 Lab Tour: HAT and Coating Removal Laser Lab Clay Flannigan, Mike Rigney
1445-1600 Lab Tour: Robotics and Automation, Simulation... Clay Flannigan, Susan Porter
1600-1630 Keynote: Design of Five Story Laser Depainting... Jeremy Zoss
1630-1700 Consortium Overview and Wrap up Paul Hvass
1715 Shuttles Depart for Dinner: Boiler House


Friday, March 4 (Members Only):

Time Description Host/Presenter
0800 Shuttle Pickup at Hyatt Regency Hill Country
0800-0830 Registration, Light Breakfast
0830-0845 Welcome and Introductions Paul Hvass
0845-0920 RIC-Americas Highlights and Upcoming Events Paul Hvass, Shaun Edwards
0920-0940 RIC-Europe: Rapid Growth Mirko Bordignon
0940-1000 Is it Time for RIC-Asia? Nicholas Yeo Chang Yee
1000-1030 Break
1030-1130 RIC Strategy Round Tables – NNMI, App Store... Moderator - Paul Hvass
1130-1200 ROS 2.0 Real Time Capabilities, Q+A Morgan Quigley
1200-1230 Lunch
1230-1300 Lunch Keynote: PlusOne Robotics Erik Nieves
1300-1400 Focused Technical Projects Paul Hvass
1400-1415 Break
1415-1515 ROS-I Technical Roadmapping Round Tables Clay Flannigan
1515-1530 Action Items/Wrap up Paul Hvass
1530 Shuttles Direct to Airport and Hotel


RIC-Europe Event Recap: Tech Demo & 2016 Members Meeting

Thanks to all the participants who made the 2016 RIC-EU tech demo and members meeting a success! On Jan 28-29, Fraunhofer IPA, the managing organization of the ROS-Industrial Consortium Europe, welcomed more than 50 participants to the annual RIC-EU members meeting. ROS technology continues to mature and find its way into commercial products and industrial applications, which was shown during a technology demonstration session.

Martin Hägele welcomes the guests to the tech demo session

Martin Hägele welcomes the guests to the tech demo session

Participants had the chance to see for themselves what ROS technology can do in terms of easing robot programming; extending the applicability of commercial software platforms through standard interfaces; allowing for hardware-independent intuitive touch interfaces; and powering next-gen robot hardware.

the tech demos kindly provided by IT+robotics srl, ppm as, fraunhofer IPa and blue workforce a/s

the tech demos kindly provided by IT+robotics srl, ppm as, fraunhofer IPa and blue workforce a/s

After introductory talks, the attendees enjoyed individual presentations, and were able to interact with the presenters and fellow attendees during an open-floor format. The day ended with a social event.

The members' meeting held Jan 29 is an annual gathering of members for an overview of activities during the previous year and current initiatives. Presentations about efforts similar to ROS-I targeting other domains were given. The SiLA initiative aims at similar standardization efforts, but for lab automation equipment; the Machinekit project, which is undergoing interesting development, can make in the future Machinekit+ROS a full stack covering all of your robotics-related needs, from bare metal up to the user interface. This "sister" project raised considerable interest for its potential, especially for hardware designers in need of a means to interface with ROS. More updates will be available on rosindustrial.org, as integration efforts continue.

the RIC-EU members meeting, held on the second day of the event

the RIC-EU members meeting, held on the second day of the event

Attendees enjoyed presentations from RIC-EU's scientific advisor, Martijn Wisse from TU Delft, and Mirko Bordignon from Fraunhofer IPA on ROS infrastructure further development for industrial use thanks to public funding. Ingo Luetkebohle from Bosch, which recently joined RIC-EU, provided an overview of ROS activities at his organization, while Paul Evans from the Southwest Research Institute briefed the attendees on the North American ROS-I Consortium.

The meeting ended with an open discussion, which provided inputs for the ongoing technology roadmapping activity. This will continue at the upcoming RIC-NA members meeting, and will set the schedule for the technical developments of ROS-I during 2016.

For your reference, the detailed agenda of the whole event can be found here.

New Intrinsic Calibration Procedure

According to a ROS users survey that was conducted in 2014, the most popular hardware to integrate with ROS is a camera. Cameras are often used to perceive the environment or to localize robots and are a critical component of the sense-plan-act capability that ROS enables. Over the past two years, the ROS-I team has been working to create an industrial calibration library that supports both intrinsic and extrinsic calibration of vision sensors. What is novel about the library is that is can handle groups of heterogeneous sensors that may be static, or mounted to a robot, or some combination thereof. And it coordinates with MoveIt! to automate calibration procedures in which robot motion is required during calibration. While the extrinsic calibration routines are well in hand, the intrinsic calibration algorithm, which is based on a popular lens distortion model, resulted in higher parameter variance than was expected based on residual errors. This is particularly true for the focal length parameter, which is essential for correctly interpreting the size of objects in the scene. The ROS-I team has developed a novel camera intrinsic calibration technique that is both computationally faster and provides superior results to the methods commonly employed in machine vision.

The optimization procedure outlined by Zhang and automated by both OpenCV/ROS, and Matlab orchestrate the collection of a set of images of a calibration target. Both the extrinsic pose of the camera and the intrinsic parameters themselves are determined by minimizing the re-projection error. Using these methods, the residual re-projection error is on the order of ¼ pixel/observation or less. However, the variances of focal length and optical center are much higher, typically being 20 pixels and 5 pixels respectively. This is due to correlation between parameters of the distortion model with the focal length parameter.

The new procedure developed by the ROS-I team reduces parameter variance to be on par with the residual error. It requires only 10 to 20 images, but each is taken a known distance apart with little or no skew (refer to images). The new procedure estimates the extrinsic pose for the first image, and constrains the optimization to use the known pose relationship for subsequent images. The focal length and optical center are significantly better constrained. Using the resulting intrinsic calibration parameters for a given camera yields significantly better extrinsic calibration or pose estimation accuracy. Try out the Intrinsic Camera Calibration (ICC) tutorial that is posted on the ROS-I wiki.

The new intrinsic calibration procedure requires one to move the camera to known positions along an axis that is approximately normal to  the calibration target.

The new intrinsic calibration procedure requires one to move the camera to known positions along an axis that is approximately normal to  the calibration target.

3D Camera Survey

The recent availability of affordable ROS-compatible 3D sensors has been one of the fortunate coincidences that has accelerated the spread of ROS. Since the popular the ASUS Xtion Pro Live has been intermittently stocked, check out the field of ROS-compatible 3D sensors to review the contenders.

ASUS® XtionPro™ Live

Type: Structured light
Depth Range: 0.8 to 3.5 m
3D Resolution: 640 x 480
RGB Resolution: 1280 x 1024
Frame Rate: 30 fps
Latency: ~1.5 frames
FOV: 58° H, 45° V
Physical dims: ~180x40x25 mm (head)
Interface: USB 2.0
Link to ROS Driver
Notes: Similar internals to the Xbox Kinect 1.0. Intermittent availability for purchase.

Microsoft® Kinect™ 2.0

Type: Time of flight
Depth Range: 0.5 to 4.5 m
3D Resolution: 512 x 424
RGB Resolution: 1920 x 1080
Frame Rate: 30 fps
Latency: 20 ms minimum
FOV: 70° H, 60° V
Physical dims: ~250x70x45 mm (head)
Interface: USB 3.0
Link to ROS Driver
Notes: Latency with ROS is multiple frames.
Active cooling.

Intel RealSense R200

Type: Stereo with pattern projector
Depth Range: 0.6 – 3.5 m
3D Resolution: 640 x 480
RGB Resolution: 1920 x 1080
Frame Rate: 60 fps (3D), 30 fps (RGB)
Latency: 1 frame
FOV: 59° H, 46° V
Physical dims: 102x9.5x7 mm
Interface: USB 3.0
Link to ROS Driver
Notes: Outdoors capable.

IFM® Efector™ O3D303

Type: Time of flight
3D Resolution: 176 x 132
RGB Resolution: N/A
Depth Range: 0.3 to 8 m
Frame Rate: 25 fps
Latency: 1 frame
FOV: 60° V, 45° H
Physical Dims: 120x95x76 mm
Interface: Ethernet
Link to ROS Driver
Notes: Accuracy +/-4 mm. IP65/67 industrial enclosure.

Stereolabs® ZED™

Type: Embedded stereo
3D Resolution: 2208 x 1242 max
RGB: 2208 x 1242 max
Depth Range: 1.5 to 20 m
Frame Rate: 15 fps at max res., 120 fps at VGA res.
Latency: 1 frame
FOV: 96° H, 54° V
Physical Dims: 175x30x33 mm
Interface: USB 3.0
Link to ROS Driver
Notes: Latency not confirmed.

Carnegie Robotics® MultiSense™ S7

Type: Embedded stereo
3D Resolution: 2048 x 1088
RGB Resolution: 2048 x 1088 max (7.5 fps)
Depth Range: 0.4 m to infinity
Frame Rate: 15 fps at 2048 x 544
Latency: 1 frame
FOV: 80° H, 45° V
Physical Dims: 130x130x65 mm
Interface: Ethernet
Link to ROS Driver
Notes: IP68 enclosure.

Ensenso® N35-606-16-BL

Type: Structured light
3D Resolution: 1280 x 1024
RGB: 1280 x 1024
Frame Rate: 10 fps
Latency: 1 frame
FOV: 58° H, 52° V
Physical Dims: 175x50x52 mm
Interface: Ethernet
Link to PCL/ROS Driver
Notes: Many other resolutions and FOVs available. IP65/67 enclosure available.

SICK® 3visitor-T™

Type: Time of flight
3D Resolution: 144 x 176
RGB: N/A
Frame Rate: 30 fps
Latency: 66 msec
FOV: 69° H, 56° V
Physical Dims: 162x93x78 mm
Interface: Ethernet
Link to ROS Driver
Notes: IP67 enclosure

CAD to ROS Project Launch

A longstanding need, which will improve the efficiency of setting up a ROS project, is the ability to import model and process data from various CAD systems. In collaboration with TU Delft last year, we proposed a ROS-I Consortium Focused Technical Project to develop a CAD data importer for ROS that could automatically convert from common CAD files to URDFs and SRDFs. While the initiative was met with great interest, the lengthy duration and fixed-price milestone contract arrangement were not sufficiently attractive to garner the investment required to launch the project. However, a strong showing by the developer community led us to believe that much of the software development work would be contributed by collaborating consortium members, if technical leadership was provided to guide and curate the development. Furthermore, we wished to expand the future vision of CAD to ROS by building it into a 3D workbench framework. This will provide a common user experience for importing and configuring sensors, Cartesian process plans, motion plans, and point cloud data in the future. To assure incremental progress, we restructured the CAD to ROS project, reorganizing it into five milestones, each approximately four months:

  1. URDF GUI Editor
  2. Process Planning
  3. Work Cell Planning
  4. Sensor Configuration and Calibration Setup
  5. 3D Point Cloud Importer

We also restructured the business model. There are now four types of contributors to the project:

  • Technical Overseer: TU Delft will set the software architecture design goals and will review pull requests from developers.
  • Sponsor: In December 2015, one of the ROS-I Consortium members pledged their support for TU Delft’s efforts.
  • Developers: In exchange for helping to write the code, Consortium members will have access to the private project repository.
  • Consortium Administrator: SwRI and Fraunhofer IPA will recruit developers from amongst the Consortium membership to help with coding.

For this particular Consortium project, we are implementing a business model in which only contributors from the Consortium have access to the URDF editor tool. This is an opportunity to see how productive the community can be when motivated by a little self-interest.

We need the help of ROS-I Consortium member software developers! Please contact paul.hvass@swri.org, or mirko.bordignon@ipa.fraunhofer.de to gain access to the project and to help complete Milestone 1!

CAD to ROS Milestone 1: URDF Editor. Thanks to Levi Armstrong from SwRI for contributing his QT GUI as a head start for the project!

CAD to ROS Milestone 1: URDF Editor. Thanks to Levi Armstrong from SwRI for contributing his QT GUI as a head start for the project!

Job Opening at Blue Workforce

Submitted by: Preben Hjørnet, CEO of Blue Workforce Robotics

Robot Control Senior Engineer

As we have initiated phase two of the Ragnar Robot platform development we are seeking senior robotics software engineering resource’s. You should have solid experience dealing with servo and process control challenges implemented on top of Linux( UBUNTO LTS) associated with RTkernel execution. Frameworks like ROS-I, Open EtherCAT ( EtherLAB) should be familiar to your previous work. Strong background with similar context software development within the robotics space is preferred. 

You will become a key member of a tight core group of development engineers internally and externally as we are conducting several project in close collaboration with key partners in USA/Canada, Europe and Asia. We have an entrepreneurial attitude and culture and you should be comfortable with playing a proactive role with a high level of freedom to plan and execute your task, and appreciate an open minded peer2peer based self-managing process, where you can have maximal influence based on your level of involvement and support to the team.

Blue Workforce faces a stage change where we predict a radical expiation of the organization and market presence globally. This will as we move forward continuously open new opportunities for your carrier and ability to catch new opportunities including relocating to US/CA other EU nations or Asia if desired. Currently we have operations in Denmark and soon US. The Position will for the first 6 months be residing at our facility in Frederikshavn/Aalborg Denmark.

Type: Full time

Skills: Embedded real-time robotics control software development. M.Sc./B.Sc. level.

Experience : 2 years minimum.

Languish: English written/spoken fluid at business/engineering level.

Closing : ASAP , no lather than January 15th.

Application should be emailed to ch@blueworkforce.com, including CV/resume.