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Open AccessArticle

PiBot: An Open Low-Cost Robotic Platform with Camera for STEM Education

by Julio Vega *,† and José M. Cañas
Department of Telematic Systems and Computation, Rey Juan Carlos University, Camino del Molino S/N, 28934 Fuenlabrada, Madrid, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Electronics 2018, 7(12), 430; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics7120430
Received: 16 October 2018 / Revised: 7 December 2018 / Accepted: 10 December 2018 / Published: 12 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open-Source Electronics Platforms: Development and Applications)
This paper presents a robotic platform, PiBot, which was developed to improve the teaching of robotics with vision to secondary students. Its computational core is the Raspberry Pi 3 controller board, and the greatest novelty of this prototype is the support developed for the powerful camera mounted on board, the PiCamera. An open software infrastructure written in Python language was implemented so that the student may use this camera as the main sensor of the robotic platform. Furthermore, higher-level commands were provided to enhance the learning outcome for beginners. In addition, a PiBot 3D printable model and the counterpart for the Gazebo simulator were also developed and fully supported. They are publicly available so that students and schools without the physical robot or that cannot afford to obtain one, can nevertheless practice, learn and teach Robotics using these open platforms: DIY-PiBot and/or simulated-PiBot. View Full-Text
Keywords: teaching robotics; science teaching; STEM; robotic tool; Python; Raspberry Pi; PiCamera; vision system teaching robotics; science teaching; STEM; robotic tool; Python; Raspberry Pi; PiCamera; vision system
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Vega, J.; Cañas, J.M. PiBot: An Open Low-Cost Robotic Platform with Camera for STEM Education. Electronics 2018, 7, 430.

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