This paper describes the development of a Raspberry PI-controlled VEX robot for an undergraduate robotic course. The Raspberry PI controls the mobile base built using the VEX robotics kit without using the Cortex micro-controller that comes with the kit. The aim is to create a physical robot that is manageable, easily replicable, and capable of performing advanced robotic control tasks such as vision-based control.
The constructed robot adopts the great features of the PI and the VEX hardware. Firstly, the VEX hardware consists of various sensors and actuators for students to practice the construction and assembly of an autonomous robot. Secondly, the Raspberry PI provides a Linux environment for programming and implementing advanced algorithms. As a result, the robot can assist effective teaching of many STEM subjects involving robotics, image processing, and artificial intelligence. It can also facilitate undergraduate research outside of the classroom.
The paper describes the development of the PI-controlled VEX robot, providing details of its construction, electronics wiring, low-level motion control, onboard image processing, and closed-loop vision-based control.