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Proceedings Paper

Design of a robotic vehicle with self-contained intelligent wheels
Author(s): Eric A. Poulson; John S. Jacob; Robert W. Gunderson; Ben A. Abbott
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Paper Abstract

The Center for Intelligent Systems has developed a small robotic vehicle named the Advanced Rover Chassis 3 (ARC 3) with six identical intelligent wheel units attached to a payload via a passive linkage suspension system. All wheels are steerable, so the ARC 3 can move in any direction while rotating at any rate allowed by the terrain and motors. Each intelligent wheel unit contains a drive motor, steering motor, batteries, and computer. All wheel units are identical, so manufacturing, programing, and spare replacement are greatly simplified. The intelligent wheel concept would allow the number and placement of wheels on the vehicle to be changed with no changes to the control system, except to list the position of all the wheels relative to the vehicle center. The task of controlling the ARC 3 is distributed between one master computer and the wheel computers. Tasks such as controlling the steering motors and calculating the speed of each wheel relative to the vehicle speed in a corner are dependent on the location of a wheel relative to the vehicle center and ar processed by the wheel computers. Conflicts between the wheels are eliminated by computing the vehicle velocity control in the master computer. Various approaches to this distributed control problem, and various low level control methods, have been explored.

Paper Details

Date Published: 12 August 1998
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 3366, Robotic and Semi-Robotic Ground Vehicle Technology, (12 August 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.317535
Show Author Affiliations
Eric A. Poulson, Utah State Univ. (United States)
John S. Jacob, Utah State Univ. (United States)
Robert W. Gunderson, Utah State Univ. (United States)
Ben A. Abbott, Utah State Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3366:
Robotic and Semi-Robotic Ground Vehicle Technology
Grant R. Gerhart; Ben A. Abbott, Editor(s)

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