Manoeuvrabot is intended to be highly manoruvrable - hence it has four omni-wheels which can each be driven independently from a 4 channel motor controller. Initially it is remote controlled but eventually we aim to add some degree of autonomous operation with various sensors. This is documentation of the first phase of development.
Omniwheels and motors are from www.bitsforbots.co.uk
Motor control uses 2 micro dual serial motor controllers from www.pololu.com (unfortunately this specific model is now discontinued, but there is a new generation alternative available).
Remote Control uses Spektrum DSM2 SP9545 satellite receiver controlled from any compatible transmitter (e.g. DX5e, DX6i , DX7, DX8). This is a particularly excellent solution for remote control where a microcontroller with serial input is involved as it can be interfaced directly without the need to decode PWM signals for each channel and it is very cheap.
Main microcontroller is a Microchip pic18F2680 with custom controller software. (Time to design, build and programme this are not included in the duration of this project as this component has been reused from earlier projects.)
As you can see in the video the omniwheel arrangement isn't working completely satisfactorily at present. When one pair of wheels is turning under power the others should allow the robot to move by the orange segments spinning round but this doesn't always happen. Perhaps we need some form of suspension to keep all wheels equally in contact with the ground. If anyone has encountered and overcome this issue with an omniwheel robot we'd love to hear how you did it. Thanks.