Pololu Blog (Page 4)

Welcome to the Pololu Blog, where we provide updates about what we and our customers are doing and thinking about. This blog used to be Pololu president Jan Malášek’s Engage Your Brain blog; you can view just those posts here.

Video: Phone-controlled BB8 droid build tutorial

Posted by Ryan on 25 January 2016

TechBuilder’s life-size phone-controlled BB8 droid uses a Pololu dual VNH5019 motor driver shield to drive two 19:1 37D metal gearmotors.

For step-by-step instructions for building this droid, see his DIY BB8 Instructables page.

Video: Rubik's Cube-solving robot

Posted by Ryan on 25 January 2016

This “World’s Fastest” Rubik’s Cube-solving robot uses six DRV8825 stepper motor driver carriers, one for each face.

New products: 12V 25D mm gearmotors with encoders

Posted by Ben on 13 January 2016
Tags: new products

All of our 25D mm metal gearmotors, including the newest versions with 12V motors, are now available with quadrature encoders. That’s 37 new products in all! With five different motor winding options and gear ratios available from 4.4:1 through 499:1, our total selection of 25D mm metal gearmotors has grown to nearly 100 options:

Rated
Voltage
Motor Type Stall
Current
@ Rated Voltage
No-Load
Speed
@ Rated Voltage
Approximate
Stall Torque
@ Rated Voltage


With Encoder


Without Encoder
6 V high-power
(HP)
6.5 A 10,000 RPM 5 oz-in 1:1 HP 6V w/encoder
2150 RPM 20 oz-in 4.4:1 HP 6V w/encoder 4.4:1 HP 6V
990 RPM 39 oz-in 9.7:1 HP 6V w/encoder 9.7:1 HP 6V
460 RPM 75 oz-in 20.4:1 HP 6V w/encoder 20.4:1 HP 6V
280 RPM 90 oz-in 34:1 HP 6V w/encoder 34:1 HP 6V
200 RPM 115 oz-in 47:1 HP 6V w/encoder 47:1 HP 6V
130 RPM 150 oz-in 75:1 HP 6V w/encoder 75:1 HP 6V
97 RPM 210 oz-in 99:1 HP 6V w/encoder 99:1 HP 6V
56 RPM 350 oz-in 172:1 HP 6V w/encoder 172:1 HP 6V
6 V low-power
(LP)
2.4 A 6200 RPM 2 oz-in 1:1 LP 6V w/encoder
1300 RPM 8 oz-in 4.4:1 LP 6V w/encoder 4.4:1 LP 6V
590 RPM 17 oz-in 9.7:1 LP 6V w/encoder 9.7:1 LP 6V
290 RPM 33 oz-in 20.4:1 LP 6V w/encoder 20.4:1 LP 6V
170 RPM 50 oz-in 34:1 LP 6V w/encoder 34:1 LP 6V
120 RPM 65 oz-in 47:1 LP 6V w/encoder 47:1 LP 6V
78 RPM 95 oz-in 75:1 LP 6V w/encoder 75:1 LP 6V
58 RPM 130 oz-in 99:1 LP 6V w/encoder 99:1 LP 6V
34 RPM 200 oz-in 172:1 LP 6V w/encoder 172:1 LP 6V
25 RPM 220 oz-in 227:1 LP 6V w/encoder 227:1 LP 6V
15 RPM 300 oz-in 378:1 LP 6V w/encoder 378:1 LP 6V
11 RPM 400 oz-in 499:1 LP 6V w/encoder 499:1 LP 6V
12 V high-power
(HP)
5.6 A 10,200 RPM 5.5 oz-in 1:1 HP 12V w/encoder
2250 RPM 23 oz-in 4.4:1 HP 12V w/encoder 4.4:1 HP 12V
1030 RPM 44 oz-in 9.7:1 HP 12V w/encoder 9.7:1 HP 12V
500 RPM 85 oz-in 20.4:1 HP 12V w/encoder 20.4:1 HP 12V
290 RPM 120 oz-in 34:1 HP 12V w/encoder 34:1 HP 12V
210 RPM 165 oz-in 47:1 HP 12V w/encoder 47:1 HP 12V
130 RPM 240 oz-in 75:1 HP 12V w/encoder 75:1 HP 12V
100 RPM 300 oz-in 99:1 HP 12V w/encoder 99:1 HP 12V
12 V medium-power
(MP)
2.1 A 7800 RPM 2.7 oz-in 1:1 MP 12V w/encoder
1700 RPM 11 oz-in 4.4:1 MP 12V w/encoder 4.4:1 MP 12V
770 RPM 22 oz-in 9.7:1 MP 12V w/encoder 9.7:1 MP 12V
370 RPM 42 oz-in 20.4:1 MP 12V w/encoder 20.4:1 MP 12V
220 RPM 63 oz-in 34:1 MP 12V w/encoder 34:1 MP 12V
160 RPM 85 oz-in 47:1 MP 12V w/encoder 47:1 MP 12V
100 RPM 125 oz-in 75:1 MP 12V w/encoder 75:1 MP 12V
76 RPM 165 oz-in 99:1 MP 12V w/encoder 99:1 MP 12V
43 RPM 250 oz-in 172:1 MP 12V w/encoder 172:1 MP 12V
33 RPM 320 oz-in 227:1 MP 12V w/encoder 227:1 MP 12V
12 V low-power
(LP)
1.1 A 5600 RPM 2 oz-in 1:1 LP 12V w/encoder
1200 RPM 8 oz-in 4.4:1 LP 12V w/encoder 4.4:1 LP 12V
560 RPM 15 oz-in 9.7:1 LP 12V w/encoder 9.7:1 LP 12V
260 RPM 29 oz-in 20.4:1 LP 12V w/encoder 20.4:1 LP 12V
150 RPM 43 oz-in 34:1 LP 12V w/encoder 34:1 LP 12V
110 RPM 60 oz-in 47:1 LP 12V w/encoder 47:1 LP 12V
71 RPM 85 oz-in 75:1 LP 12V w/encoder 75:1 LP 12V
55 RPM 115 oz-in 99:1 LP 12V w/encoder 99:1 LP 12V
31 RPM 180 oz-in 172:1 LP 12V w/encoder 172:1 LP 12V
23 RPM 240 oz-in 227:1 LP 12V w/encoder 227:1 LP 12V
14 RPM 320 oz-in 378:1 LP 12V w/encoder 378:1 LP 12V

New products: LSM6DS33 accelerometer/gyro and LIS3MDL magnetometer carriers

Posted by Kevin on 11 January 2016
Tags: new products

LSM6DS33 3D Accelerometer and Gyro Carrier with Voltage Regulator.

LIS3MDL 3-Axis Magnetometer Carrier with Voltage Regulator.

We’re getting 2016 started with the release of two new products: an LSM6DS33 3D accelerometer and gyro carrier and an LIS3MDL 3-axis magnetometer carrier.

As with other ST sensors, these chips can be configured and read through I²C or SPI interfaces, and our compact breakout boards incorporate voltage regulators and level shifters to make them easier to use with 5 V systems. Compared to the inertial and magnetic sensors we’ve used previously (most recently the LSM303D accelerometer and magnetometer and the L3GD20H gyro), these two new ICs offer different combinations of capabilities: the LSM6DS33 integrates an accelerometer and rate gyroscope into a single package, while the LIS3MDL is a standalone magnetometer.

LSM6DS33 3D Accelerometer and Gyro Carrier with Voltage Regulator, bottom view with dimensions.

LIS3MDL 3-Axis Magnetometer Carrier with Voltage Regulator in a breadboard.

For more information about these boards, see their product pages at the links below.

Pololu and LVBots CES Open House 2016

Posted by Ryan on 4 January 2016
Tags: lvbots

Are you attending CES or in Las Vegas this Thursday evening? You can join Pololu and LVBots on January 7 any time from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. for CES Open House 2016! Like last year, LVBots members will be showcasing their robotics and electronics creations, Pololu will be giving tours of our manufacturing and other operations, and you can present your company or your projects. We will provide pizza. Registration and other details are on the LVBots Meetup page.

VertiGo robot drives up walls with propellers

Posted by Ryan on 29 December 2015

VertiGo is a novel robot designed with one main goal: the ability to drive on floors and walls, even if the walls aren’t perfectly flat. To accomplish this, it uses tiltable propellers for propulsion rather than motorized wheels. The propeller tilting is controlled by two Pololu Jrk 21v3 USB motor controllers with feedback. Students at ETH Zurich made this robot in collaboration with Disney Research Zürich.

You can visit the VertiGo website for pictures and project news.

Closed December 25 and January 1

Posted by Ben on 23 December 2015


We will be closed for Christmas on Friday, December 25 and for New Year’s Day on Friday, January 1, so orders placed after 2 PM Pacific Time on the 24th or 31st will be shipped on the following Monday. Additionally, FedEx Ground does not ship on the 24th (tomorrow).

Merry Christmas and happy New Year!

New products: Raspberry Pi Model A+ and Raspberry Pi 2 Model B

Posted by Kevin on 16 December 2015

We now have three "Pi"s! …No, I’m not talking about our 3pi robot.

In addition to the Raspberry Pi Model B+ we’ve been carrying, we now offer the smaller Raspberry Pi Model A+ and the more powerful Raspberry Pi 2 Model B as well. Check out their product pages for details about each version and how they compare to each other.

Raspberry Pi Model A+.

Raspberry Pi 2 Model B.

Raspberry Pi Model B+.

As with the B+, the A+ and 2 B are compatible with our Raspberry Pi expansion boards, including our A-Star 32U4 Robot Controller with Raspberry Pi Bridge and our MC33926 and DRV8835 motor driver add-ons.

The Purdue Tuggiteers' spring 2015 senior design project

Posted by Jon on 11 December 2015

For their senior design project in the spring semester of this year, a team of Mechanical Engineering students (the Tuggiteers!) from Purdue made a remotely-controlled plane-towing vehicle that uses one of our step-up/step-down regulators. The team shared with us this video of their final review, which demonstrates the vehicle approaching, connecting to, and towing a single-engine aircraft:

This next video captures their vehicle’s first test. An on-board camera allows you to get a 1st-person view of the latch actuating and gripping the aircraft wheel:

We are always excited to see our parts getting used in cool projects, and we were especially excited to see this because it looks way easier than doing it the usual way:

Ben, pushing a plane (before he started Crossfit).

Pi Wars 2015

Posted by Ryan on 8 December 2015

There is a nice recap on the Raspberry Pi blog of the Pi Wars 2015 competition that was held last weekend on December 5th, 2015. It is a robotics competition held in Cambridge, UK that focuses on robots controlled by a Raspberry Pi. I noticed a lot of Pololu parts on the robots in the videos. Just a few examples are wheels and tracks, motors, and reflectance sensors. I didn’t see any A-Star 32U4 robot controllers in the videos, but I think that would make a great controller for a robot in the next competition because it can be used as a Raspberry Pi expansion board!

You can check out the Pi Wars 2015 post for more details.

New Products

Magnetic Encoder Pair Kit for Mini Plastic Gearmotors, 12 CPR, 2.7-18V
Hakko FA-400 Smoke Absorber
USB Micro-B Connector Breakout Board
Free Circuit Cellar magazine July 2016
VL53L0X Time-of-Flight Distance Sensor Carrier with Voltage Regulator, 200cm Max
T1-3/4 (5mm) RGB LED with Diffused Lens (5-pack)
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