ZMP > e-nuvo > e-nuvo WALK

e-nuvo WALK

e-nuvo WALK ver 2.5 is THE bipedal walking robot that permits you to put into practice the technologies you learned with the other models(BASIC, ARM, WHEEL).With its distributed processing structure composed of 4 CPUS and 12 Joints (motors- degrees of freedom), this robot is the most suitable for purposes that go from teaching to research.We concentrate on controlling the whole system with a PC, system that consists of serial links similar to our robot ARM. We also have started producing an alternative version with the exterior covering of nuvo that joins together the educational value of e-nuvo and the futuristic design style of nuvo!

e-nuvo WALK (formerly known simply as e-nuvo ver 2.5) has -we are pleased to say it- been very much well received since it was presented to the public in 2004 and promoted as one of the most suitable tools for engineering education. Today more than 300 units are being used both in Japan and overseas, in universities, colleges, technical highschools, and industry laboratories. Although developed for educational purposes, its versatility makes it appropriate not only for education but also for research on walking, and for your business as well.

Mechanics

e-nuvo WALK is a robot with 6 joints on each leg (making it 12 joints in total.) Since each Joint has one motor and represents one DOF (Degree of Freedom) we can also say that e-nuvo WALK is a bipedal walking robot with 12 DOF's. The Joints are two in the ankle (ROLL and PITCH movements), one on the knee (only PITCH movement) and three on the hip (ROLL, PITCH and YAW). The position of the motors can be seen in the graphic below.

Electronics

e-nuvo WALK has a distributed control architecture, based on three kinds of microprocessors. The PC microprocessor acts as the robot's brain therefore controlling the motion patterns of the robot. The Main CPU (in the robot) acts like the bridge between the serial cable (coming from the PC) and the robot's CAN network. The SubCPU's are in charge of the low level control of the motors and the sensor data capturing.

Control System

e-nuvo WALK's system is a distributed controlled system composed of three layers (PC, Main CPU, Sub-CPU) with processes running on all of them. In this part we are going to explain the software processes of the PC side of the e-nuvo WALK architecture. The PC acting as e-nuvo's brain is in charge of the execution of motion patterns by transmitting these to the robot. The robot, once it receives these patterns, executes them with its two legs.

e-nuvo DLL

The e-nuvo DLL is a package of control and communication functions for the robot. These functions are in charge of the communication between PC and robot, so that the user commands can be converted in a format that is understood by the low-level Sub-CPUs.

e-nuvo API

This is the API function library that the user utilize when writing his/her own programs for the robot. (API: Application Programming Interface) The robot can be programmed using both Visual C++ or Visual BASIC (both from the Windows [.NET framework]) Each and everyone of these API functions are explained in the User Manual of the robot in a easy-to-understand format. The Set also comes with a set of example programs which permit the user to start programming their robot immediately after getting them

e-nuvo GUI

Built using Visual BASIC, the e-nuvo GUI is a GUI tool for intuitively operating the robot. Although you can completely control and program the robot using the e-nuvo API, the e-nuvo GUI provides a convenient way to all the basic operations the user can require. Among its multiple functionalities we can name: Initialization and Calibration of the robot, Motors' PID parameters setup, Motion File Execution, Sensor data log (CSV and Matlab's .M formats), etc. The source code of the e-nuvo GUI is open source, so that the user can use it for reference to construct his own programs, or even improve it!

Motion

These are textfiles that specify the motions of e-nuvo WALK. The format of these files are CSV files that describe the 12 angles of the robot, and therefore can be easily modified with any editor or spreadsheet.

Motion Maker

Although the motion files can be modified with an editor the Set comes with an convenient tool for building Motion Files. This tool is called "Motion Maker." First the user prepares several "Poses" (describing the angles of the 12 angles of the robot at a particular instant) and based on these poses, the Motion Maker works as an interpolator to build the corresponding motion file. So far, these tool uses linear interpolation.

MATLAB M-Files

Since the Motion Files are simple CSV text files, Motion Maker is not the only way to built these files. The user can freely use other tools or make their own to make new motions. Included in the Set, we provide also several MATLAB M-File Scripts, that permit the user to build Motion Files using the poweful features of MATLAB, which includes interpolation methods other than just linear: spline, trigonometric, etc. This allows the user to build smoother motions than the ones built with the Motion Maker. Also included is a walking pattern generator that doesn't use pose interpolation. All these methods provide the student with many different tools to learn and research into the field of bipedal motion

Curriculum Textbook

A bipedal walking robot represents an opportunity to apply all what we have learned with the other e-nuvo Series robots. By reviewing what he/she has learned with BASIC, ARM or WHEEL, with this robot, the student can concentrate on a superior layer of learning. The textbooks WA-1 and WA-2 are going to be issued consecutively but in the meantime, the robot is being packed with the original Robot Guidebook.

WA-1 BIPEDAL ROBOT PROGRAMMING

First this book reviews our previous knowledge, taking as a framework the different systems that form e-nuvo WALK: The mechanical harware, the electronic system, and the control system. Then the book explains how to create new motions for the robot using the Motion Maker. Finally the method using MATLAB to generate new motions as well as how to program the robots in Visual BASIC or C++ is explained. Scheduled for late 2006.

WA-2 BIPEDAL ROBOT MODELING AND CONTROL

Dynamical System Analysis using Simulink to model the robot is covered in this book. Currently under development in collaboration with Cybernet Systems (The MathWorks representative in Japan) Scheduled for 2007

ORIGINAL e-nuvo 2.5 GUIDEBOOK

Currently all e-nuvo WALKs are being shipped with the Original practical User guide which explains in a detailed way, all what is necessary for programming and working with e-nuvo WALK. A different 300 page book which contains also mechanics, electronics and control engineering chapters is available in Japanese and Chinese (Simplified)

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