Amphibious Robot (Mexibot)

Our robot is an autonomous amphibious vehicle named Mexibot by Independent Robotics Inc. It belongs to the family of AQUA robots. Contrary to traditional aquatic robots and teleoperated devices that use thrusters and remote control for mobility, the AQUA family of robots is a hexapod robot capable of untethered amphibious operation. In water, the robot's propulsion is based on six fins that can provide motion in 5 degrees of freedom up to depths near 35 meters.

Mexibot during open-sea trials at Mahahual, Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Mexibot is extremely light and portable, it weighs 17 kilos and measures 64 x 44 x 13 cms. It is equipped with three cameras (two in the front and one in the back) and other environmental and inertial sensors. It is an advanced technology that makes no noise so it can swim, explore and search for objects in sea, cenotes, rivers and lakes with a mininum risk to human or marine life.

Group members at Laguna de Bacalar, Quintana Roo, Mexico.

The research projects in which we are using Mexibot include: the development of robust control models to improve the visual-based autonomous navigation; reactive navigation using a fast superpixel segmentation with obstacle avoidance, and the use of semantic visual attention models for underwater robotic exploration. More details.

Mobile Robot (Rodolfo)

Rodolfo is our Pioneer 3-DX mobile robot, which is one of the most popular platforms in the mobile robotics research. Rodolfo's components are: an internal computer, controller, motors, two main wheels and a support, a ring of ultrasonic sensors (sonar). Additionally, it is equipped with visual and laser sensors.

Rodolfo interacting with children.

This robot is used in some of the courses of our Graduate Program as well as for thesis projects. Some of the projects include autonomous navigation, 3D reconstruction of large-scale environments, and SLAM. Recently, we are doing research in the area of human-robot interaction and Rodolfo is been used to interact mainly with pre-scholar children. More details.

Active Stereo Vision System

As a result of a research project at the Robot Vision Laboratory, we designed, modeled and built a biologically-inspired active vision system. The biological part is in terms of its capability to achieve real-time visual attention. This vision system has two PointGrey DragonFly Express high resolution cameras, fast engines, integrated circuits with firmware developed by a master student. The material of the base and mobile structure is stainless steel. Some parts, like gears are acetal and aluminum.

The active vision system developed in our VRlab.

This system, although simple, is powerful to conduct research in the area of active vision, in addition to its low cost, includes features that makes it far superior to its counterparts in the market, such as its speed, its open architecture (software and firmware can be reprogrammed), fast communication via USB and IEEE1394 buses, the ability to tune your controller, partially or totally modify the control law that governs the engines, and it can be manipulated on different platforms such as Linux or Windows, and different languages like C++, Visual Basic and MatLab. More details.

Humanoid robot (Timoteo)

Timoteo, is one of the four NAO robots in our group. It is a humanoid robot created by the French company Aldebaran Robotics, primarily used for robotics research centers and educational institutions. Timoteo is 58 cm high, your body has 25 degrees of freedom, which comprises mainly electric motors and actuators. It has a network of sensors that includes two cameras, four microphones, a rangefinder, two IR transmitters and receivers, an IMU, nine tactil sensor and eight pressure sensors. Various communication devices, including a voice synthesizer, LED lights and two high-fidelity speakers.

Children dancing with Timoteo.

We use Timoteo specifically in the area of human-robot interaction, due to the characteristics of easy programming and physical appearance, which facilitates interaction with humans, particularly with children. Currently, we are carrying on experimental studies and perceptive analysis of physical-cognitive behaviors in child-robot interaction. More details.