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Clearpath Robotics and Open Robotics today announced TurtleBot 4, the next generation of the popular open-source mobile robotics platform. TurtleBot 4 aims to build on the success of previous versions by providing a low-cost, fully extensible, ROS-enabled reference platform for robotics researchers, developers, and educators.
The mobile base of TurtleBot 4 is built on the iRobot Create 3 educational robot, which provides an IMU, optical floor tracking sensor, and wheel encoders for accurate positioning and localization. It also includes a suite of sensors including IR, cliff, bump, and slip detection, along with a 26Wh Li-ion battery.
All onboard sensor data are available as ROS topics via the network-connected ROS 2 API. Finally, the mobile base provides a payload capacity of 9kg and is capable of driving continuously at speeds of up to .306 m/s with the safety system engaged and peak to .46 m/s in override mode.
Fully integrated with the mobile base is a Raspberry Pi 4 computer running Ubuntu 20.04, ROS 2 and onboard sensor drivers, a front-facing stereo camera, and 2D LiDAR. Additional sensors and accessories can be integrated with the system using an accessible powered USB hub and the top mounting plate. A programmable LCD screen allows users to display information from any of the ROS topics. The platform’s IP address is also displayed allowing users to connect quickly to the robot.
Related: How NVIDIA, Open Robotics are improving ROS 2
“This year marks 10 years since we started working with the Open Robotics’s founding team on the Turtlebot 2,” said Bryan Webb, president of Clearpath Robotics. “We are very excited to continue our support for the open-source community by providing the latest and greatest technology for robotics research, development, and education. The Turtlebot 4 offers more computing power, better sensors, and a world-class user experience at an affordable price point.”
TurtleBot 4 will ship fully assembled with ROS 2 pre-installed and configured. The system will also come with detailed user documentation, an Ignition Gazebo simulation model, demo code, and a suite of tutorials, allowing users to get started out-of-the-box.
TurtleBot 4 will be available starting in Spring 2022. Click here to sign up to receive updates and be notified when pre-orders are accepted.
“We’re excited to be working with Clearpath Robotics to build the first TurtleBot designed with ROS 2 from the ground up to take advantage of the new capabilities,” said Tully Foote, co-creator of the TurtleBot and community and business development manager, Open Robotics. “Clearpath has a track record of delivering high-quality robots with exceptional performance, documentation, and support. I can’t wait to see what the ROS community is able to accomplish with TurtleBot 4.”
George knows ROS says
Turtlebot 1 was built with iRobot create base so 4 is not a new concept.
The sensors and compute module of such a learning platform are a compromise of price/performance for minimal SLAM at around $500
The only potentially different proprietary sensor is iRobot’s “optical floor tracking sensor”.
It is an expensive learning tool because one can do the same ROS/Navigation learning in simulation or with an Aliexpress Rpi4/Jetson robot kit. There is no other utility for such a vehicle except for learning ROS/Navigation without additional actuators that would allow it to do other stuff like fetch a beer or take cool selfies or herd sheep.
This Shenzen startup platform that recently went on kickstarter, is much more versatile and interesting but they don’t have the business acumen to work with OSRF and receive the benefit of “turlebot” brand
Another example of a ROS/Navigation low-cost system:
And some Alibaba kits:
Yes you can buy something off aliexpress for cheaper but iRobot has better support and a platform with proven mileage. It won’t break after a year of use, and the company won’t disappear after a year. As someone who works in education it’s much cheaper for me to buy something reliable that can work for years ahead rather than to be constantly debugging a bot that I bought from a random seller on aliexpress or finding out that the company whose robot I bought half a year ago went bankrupt or is no longer providing support for the platform (this happens much more than you would think)
Daniel C says
I started reading the source code of Nav2 months ago. I am excited to use it on Turtlebot 4. I am also interested in mastering ROS2. I hope there will be high quality documentation and demos to help me learn.