Robocars

Fully Autonomous Robocar

The last updates in the Burro autonomous robocar platform focus on two areas. One is collaborative driving of a single vehicle using multiple controllers in addition to a self-driving model, all at the same time. As an application example, one may have a neural network control the steering and intervene only when the network takes a wrong steering decision. Or,…

Autonomous driving at the micro scale

Building and training a self-driving robocar takes several iterations of hardware and software improvements. Especially training a competitive model is a time consuming process that involves going back-and-forth to the track several times to either check or improve model predictive performance by recording additional samples. Computer simulation is an alternative, however setting up a simulation environment can be a demanding…

Emulating an Ackermann Steering Vehicle

Two steering schemes are mostly popular when it comes to ground vehicles: Differential, or skid steering, and Ackermann steering. Differential steering vehicles, despite their fancy name, look just like the typical two-wheel robot chassis found pretty much everywhere: Differential steering vehicles, as the name suggests, use differential thrust to turn. Most are made of two wheels on a single axle providing…

Updates to Burro self-driving platform

I've been busy implementing some cool updates to Burro, the self-driving RC car/robot platform I'm building. Here's a summary: The Adafruit Motor HAT is now supported in addition to NAVIO2. Both boards are fully supported , and in fact you can use the same SD card in different cars/robots, without the need to reinstall anything, as detection of boards is done…

First Autonomous Indoor Laps – No Tracklines!

Here for a quick update on the state of the car, platform and Tensorflow/Keras models I'm currently building and testing in various environments. I've been working on lately on an indoor model to drive a car around the dining table in our home. It is a simple oval track, but it is visually cluttered and quite tight. Here's a video…

An Experiment On Small Vehicle Transmission

TL;DR; I've swapped the brushless inrunner in my RC car for a brushless outrunner from a multicopter. Quieter, wider throttle range and a tad more torque in high revs. Most folks want to make their RC cars run fast. My case is the opposite: I want to capture clear pictures without blur for training a neural network to drive the…

Build an Autonomous Car with RPi, NAVIO2 and Tensorflow/Keras, Part II: The Software

In the previous post I've outlined the hardware build of a "Robocar", a simple autonomous car platform using monocular vision and Deep Learning, using a small RC car with few modifications. The post focused exclusively on the hardware. If you've followed the directions in that post, you should be able to customize your RC car with a simple wooden or plastic platform, a…