Digilent's line of Robotic Development Kits (RDK) are a starting point for those new
to robotics, and can also be used for advanced designs and applications. The
RDK line includes a basic kit, a line-sensor kit and a remote control kit.
Functions and operations
The kits are each geared towards a different specialty, and each
has downloadable assembly instructions and a demo project that make it easy to
get a robot up and running quickly. The Basic Robotic Kit provides the
components needed to build a simple autonomous robot. The Line Sensor kit can autonomously
follow a line, and the Remote Control Kit provides the components need to build
a wired remote control robot using an Ethernet cable.
Tools in the kit
Each kit pairs Digilent's Cerebot 32MX4 microcontroller development board with a rugged steel
platform and all the motors, wheels, sensors and development software needed to
build a complete robot. Also, Digilent has a diverse line of peripheral modules
(Pmods) to implement basic experiments to more advanced systems designs.
Microcontroller Development Board
Cerebot 32MX4 features one of the Microchip PIC32 microcontrollers. The PIC32 provides
a 32-bit MIPS processor core operating at 80 MHz, 512 kbyte of program FLASH
and 32 kbytes of RAM memory and numerous peripheral devices, including a USB
controller and timer/counters. The board has numerous I/O connectors and power
supply options, including USB power. It also has a built-in programming and
debug circuit compatible with the included Microchip MPLAB development
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An MIT research team has invented what they see as a solution to the need for biodegradable 3D-printable materials made from something besides petroleum-based sources: a water-based robotic additive extrusion method that makes objects from biodegradable hydrogel composites.
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