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Has anyone worked with the Clearpath Robotics Husky A200?

asked 2011-03-28 09:57:44 -0500

filitchp gravatar image

updated 2014-01-28 17:09:26 -0500

ngrennan gravatar image

I am wondering if anyone has worked with the Clearpath Robotics Husky A200 platform under ROS.
Specifically I would like to know: 1. Does the ROS API give you enough flexibility? 2. What hardware do you use to interface with it? (i.e. laptop, netbook, microATX board) 3. What additional sensors have you used with it? Thanks!

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answered 2011-03-29 11:01:42 -0500

mjcarroll gravatar image

I haven't personally used it, but it appears that the ROS API is well-written and well-supported by the actual manufacturer/designer.

It appears that all of the information from the robot base is brought out on various message types. I don't know what kind of "flexibility" that you are looking for, but you could probably use the documented API and extend it to anything that you could possibly need.

I would imagine that any computer supported by ROS and clearpath would serve to work with the platform.

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answered 2012-03-12 08:43:05 -0500

Ryan gravatar image

In case anyone would like more details in the future:

  1. We try to expose nearly all relevant controls from our regular API to ROS
  2. Most of our users use their own laptops, TurtleBot-style netbooks, FitPCs, or mini-ITX form-factor motherboards
  3. Most commonly, people use Garmin/NovAtel/uBlox GPS units, SICK/Hokuyo LIDARs, Kinects, AXIS cameras, CH Robotics/MicroStrain IMUs, Point Grey stereo cameras

Support-wise, we're also on these forums a lot :)

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answered 2011-06-12 07:15:46 -0500

joshv gravatar image

Old topic, might still be useful: I can answer these questions for the A100, the predecessor to the A200.

The API is very simple to use, and provides all the hooks you'll need to interface the chassis. The update rate is flexible and can be set very high (20Hz +). The hardware interface is straightforward (velocities, odometric readings, system and power status, battery levels, etc), all published cleanly on separate topics. There are no services that I know of, but they aren't necessary for this type of hardware interface. No Complaints.

The joystick demos work out-of-the-box and will help you get started.

We interface from laptop to chassis directly via USB-RS232 interface. We've had no problems with this interface at all, other than the port-detect feature in the vanilla A100 ROS API can interfere with the gpsd_client port detect. To avoid this, set the "port" rosparam for the chassis. Their packaged launch file can be edited directly to do this. This is a problem with GPSD, not clearpath, per se.

Our package was GPS over GPSD_Client, compass and telemetry equipment via a custom board, interfaced with our own ROS nodes, Husky A100 with Clearpath_base ros node, and a custom-written EKF-based navigation routine.

See other reply for relevant links.

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answered 2011-03-29 15:45:25 -0500

tfoote gravatar image

These guys seem to be using it with ROS as a base for vslam

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Asked: 2011-03-28 09:57:44 -0500

Seen: 1,943 times

Last updated: Mar 12 '12