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Getting Started

This chapter is for users who are new to OpenMANIPULATOR-X. The manual has an enormous amount of content, but this chapter explains how information is divided.

About OpenMANIPULATOR-X

ROS-enabled OpenMANIPULATOR-X is a full open robot platform consisting of OpenSoftware​, OpenHardware and OpenCR(Embedded board)​. First of all, collect information from the Overview and Specification pages to get an overall understanding of OpenMANIPULATOR-X.

OpenMANIPULATOR-X Setup

When you have enough understanding about OpenMANIPULATOR-X from above step, it is recommended to proceed in the following order.

Hardware Setup

  1. Check the Part List : The OpenMANIPULATOR-X only contains the parts required to configure the OpenMANIPULATOR-X body. For controlling and operating the OpenMANIPULATOR-X, the optional parts is necessary. Please check the part list page, prepare the every requaired parts. The SMPS 12V5A is necessary to supply the 12V power to the dynamixels of OpenMANIPULATOR-X. The Base Plate-02 is used to secure the OpenMANIPULATOR-X to the workspace. The controller or communication board you need to prepare depends on your development environment. If you want to develop on an embedded system, prepare OpenCR and PC. To use the ROS, prepare your PC and either the U2D2 + U2D2 Power Hub Board or OpenCR.
    To summarize, the parts to prepare are shown in the table below.

  2. Assembly : The OpenMANIPULATOR-X is provided as a non-assembled part to the box. Assemble the OpenMANIPULATOR-X according to the instructions of Assembly Manual.

  ROS environment Embedded environment
Manipulator OpenMANIPULATOR-X OpenMANIPULATOR-X
Plate Base Plate-02 Base Plate-02
Powers SMPS 12V5A SMPS 12V5A
Boards OpenCR or U2D2+U2D2 Power Hub Board OpenCR

Board Connection

To set up the software on the OpenMANIPULATOR-X and run it, you need to connect your PC and the OpenMANIPULATOR-X to the electrical board. You can use OpenCR alone or U2D2 and U2D2 Power Hub Board, as the electrical board. A simple connection diagram is shown below. Refer to [ROS] setup or [OpenCR] setup page for detailed connection method.

Software Setup

OpenMANIPULATOR-X surpports bath of ROS develop environment and an embedded system (OpenCR). Choose the development environment you want to run OpenMANIPULATOR-X, and configure the software for the environment.

ROS Environment

In the ROS development environment, you can run OpenMANIPULATOR-X using various packages provided by ROS as well as our ROS package. In this case, all the processes to run OpenMANIPULATOR-X are done in PC, and electric board is used only to convert the digital signal coming from PC into the communication signal used in dynamixel. If you want to run OpenMANIPULATOR-X in ROS environment, please install Linux, ROS and ROS package on PC according to [ROS] Setup chapter.

Embedded System

If you use OpenMANIPULATOR-X in an embedded system (OpenCR), you can easily apply your algorithm to run OpenMANIPULATOR-X with an easy-to-use system such as the Arduino IDE. In this case, the main process for running the OpenMANIPULATOR-X is done inside the embedded system, and commands can be sent to the embedded system using the GUI program of the PC, the joystick controller, or a simple sensor. If you want to run the OpenMANIPULATOR-X on an embedded system, install the software on your PC and set up OpenCR by following the [OpenCR] Setup chapter.

Let’s try Basic Operation

Basic Operation on ROS Environment

Once you have completed the above steps, run OpenMANIPULATOR-X through the provided Controller package. You can command the OpenMANIPULATOR-X to move specific position via ROS messages. Refer to the following page to run the controller package and test whether it works well.

After you have successfully run the controller package, you can run OpenMANIPULATOR-X by publishing ROS messages to the controller package using the packages we provide. The following basic operation example is provided as a package for ROS message publishing.

OpenMANIPULATOR-X can also be operated using MoveIt!. You can run the controller package that uses MoveIt! by changing the variables in the launch file of the controller package. Please refer to the following chapters and try out various motions with MoveIt!.

Basic Operation on Embedded System

OpenMANIPULATOR-X can be operated not only with ROS but also with simple embedded system (OpenCR). In the embedded system (OpenCR), the control process for operating the OpenMANIPULATOR-X operates inside OpenCR. Refer to the following page to upload the controller to OpenCR.

There are various methods to send commands to the controller running within OpenCR. We provide the Processing source code as an example of sending commands over the USB port and receiving the status of the manipulator. We also configured the controller to operate the manipulator using the RC100 controller. Try to control the OpenMANIPULATOR-X using OpenCR referring to the following page.

Challenge Applications

Do you want to apply the OpenMANIPULATOR-X to real work? Try applying the new ROS package to the OpenMANIPULATOR-X. Can be applied to various tasks. We provide examples of AR marker recognition using Astra pro, Realsence D435, and Raspberry Pi Camera V2. Refer the example below to challenge the camera-based manipulation applications.

Do you want to run the OpenMANIPULATOR-X in a space that is not accessible to humans? And you want simple, intuitive motionplanning? The master-slave application is the answer. We have provided an example that makes it easy to create motion by linking the two OpenMANIPULATOR-Xs and operating the master manipulator with hand guide teaching. Try the master-slave application by following the link below.

Let’s design my own manipulator

Mobile Manipulation

OpenMANIPULATOR-X has a complete hardware combination with Turtlebot3 waffle. Challenge your mobile manipulation by assembling TurtleBot3 waffle and OpenMANIPULATOR-X.

Tool Modification

We are proposing a way to replace and manipulate tool(gripper) of manipulator to take advantage of OpenMANIPULATOR-X for a wider range of applications. Try the new application using the Pen holder or Vacuum gripper as shown in the example below, and create your own tool to challenge more applications.

OpenMANIPULATOR Friends

Modify the hardware(DOF, structure) and software(kinematics, trajectory) of OpenMANIPULATOR-X and manipulate your own OpenMANIPULATOR. We provide a variety of the OpenMANIPULATOR-X friends as examples of hardware transformations. Try to control the manipulator with different structure and enjoy it. And try out the kinematics solving algorithm for the different structure.