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Software Development

Use our software team to get your product to market faster by leveraging our expertise in ROS, robotics, automation, embedded systems, and agile development. We like to get our hands dirty in the lab testing prototypes.

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We are ROS experts.

Our software team is deeply versed in the most arcane aspects of the Open Source Robot Operating System. We have the experience to bring-up your project from scratch or strategize with you on how to accomplish a difficult goal. Our team will be releasing our product BaseSuite for ROS Q2 2017. This suite will address many of the core deficiencies in how ROS works for mobile base applications.

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We love simulation

Every time we invest in simulation on our projects, the end result is the creation of tremendous value for our customers. Robust simulation in 2D & 3D allow us to test faster and it can do the same for you.

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Build/Deploy Automation

Our entire team loves to invest in tools. Investment in tools always pays dividends. Build/Deploy Automation is one of those tools that pays for itself on a daily basis. We can create from scratch or fine-tune your release process so it takes mere seconds to build and test rather than the many minutes of error-prone manual work that it would otherwise take. As a test driven organization, we are always looking for ways to make it easier to run a test. Put our experience to work for your team.

Hardware Development

We believe in rapid prototyping and we like to move fast...like "have an idea and be testing a proof-of-concept the next day" fast. We use the best of the old-school and the new-school to make it happen. We print circuit boards on the latest in PCB printers, make quick-and-dirty prototypes on our 3D printers, and use our full machine shop when it's time to build functional parts.

Through incremental testing, we are able to prove our designs early, ensuring that the final product doesn't suck. Through our experience working with our in-house machine shop, we can recommend the fastest or cheapest way do get something done.

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Mechanical and Electrical Design

Our hardware team is obsessed with moving fast and getting to testable prototypes. We do everything from getting a quick and dirty proof of concept together, to refining a design over many iterations and moving it into volume production. The key enabler of our Hardware Team are our Rapid Manufacturing facilities and capabilities. These capabilities allow us to turn a prototype in days when the alternative would be months when working with outside contract manufacturers.

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Mechanical Team

Our Mechanical Team has designed complex robot platforms from scratch. We thrive when given an open-ended problem to solve, and we get to scope requirements and set goals in order to get there as fast as possible. I think you'll be surprised what you can learn from us in a short intro meeting. We typically inform the technical roadmap of our customers the first time we meet them.

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Electrical Design

Our Electrical Team are expert at designing and building reliable electrical systems. Our core areas of expertise are power distribution, harness design, and PCB design.

Rapid Manufacturing

Virtually everything we design, we also manufacture in-house. The reason is simple: lead times of a few days rather than 4-6 weeks. In the race to market, your team can't wait weeks just to do a test and find out that more design tweaks are needed.

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Our Rapid Manufacturing Team is like rocket fuel for all of our projects

We really like being able to provide our manufacturing capabilities to our customers. Because we control every step of our manufacturing process, and it's all done in the same building, we get to move faster than most teams.

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Turn-Key Assembly

Once we've manufactured all the components in an assembly, our highly skilled technicians go to work on putting them together. We can handle the build and assembly of small electro-mechanical assemblies up through full size automobiles. We are especially well equipped to deal with large machine build and test.

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Maintenance and Versioning

One of the hardest parts of hardware product development is making sure prototypes are available for testing while design is actively continuing. The way we make that happen is by our highly skilled technicians being involved in the process from initial build and then on through care and feeding. When it's time to spin a new version, the team kicks into gear and can do rapid teardown and rebuild with new components. The goal is to minimize downtime of prototypes.

 

Products and Reference Designs

Over the years, we have found that many customers need similar technology solutions, but they need them implemented in special ways. This has caused us to develop our library of references designs. We use these as starting points for doing custom work. This makes projects happen cheaper and faster, while preventing us from having to constantly re-invent the wheel. In the case of our custom wheel designs, we mean that quite literally.

 
 
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EM Bot

The EM Bot (pronounced M Bot) is our omni-directional mobile base reference design. We run across many customers who would benefit from a mobile base that is modular and can be scaled up or down for particular applications. We built EM Bot to serve as a basis for those custom applications without our customers having to expend the additional time and money to develop a fully custom platform. To operate EM Bot and it's variants, we have a full suite of tools called Base Suite that make bringup and utilization of an omni-directional platform much easier and cheaper than in the past.

 
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iPDS - Intelligent Power Distribution System for Robots

Bringing up a new robot electrical system can be a major challenge. Early mechanical design, packaging, sensor selection, software behaviors, among other criteria, can all cause a domino effect whereby the electrical system must change quickly. Constantly making these changes usually will have the effect of a prototype rarely being available for testing, which is the entire point of the prototype. To address this major problem in robot product development, we developed our Intelligent Power Distribution System. The iPDS serves as a development platform that lets robotic hardware teams iterate and make changes very quickly. It provides DC voltage conversion, fusing and busing, as well as an Atmel micro-controller to serve as the stable basis for you to build your electrical architecture on. Electric Movement will release this as a dev kit in 2017.

 

iPDS is a modular architecture for power distribution that could be used in any design. It has multiple DC-DC converters onboard and allows for configurable outputs, for the purpose of powering components without the need for discrete power supplies, cases, and the multitudes of connectors. Our smart system gives feedback through sensors to reduce effort in bring up, testing, and troubleshooting.

 
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Custom Omni-directional Mecanum Wheels

In our opinion, more robots should use omni wheels. The major problem with these wheels is that there are very few options to buy off-the-shelf production-grade mecanum wheels. This state of the market caused us to design our own wheels with a formulaic approach. This reference design allows us to vary parameters within the wheel to accommodate different environmental conditions like terrain and payload-ability. Want to put a brushless hub motor inside a mecanum wheel built specifically for you application and in so doing, accomplish mechanical packaging nirvanna? You came to right place!

 
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RFID Ignition Controller

Key management in large commercial fleets has always been a challenge. When working recently with a large corporate customer here in Silicon Valley, we came up with a way to eliminate the need for keys altogether and instead, use RFID employee badges to turn a vehicle on and off. This system offers a streamlined way to for users to operate pool vehicles without ever having to worry about someone taking a key home with them at the end of the day.

 
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Time Delay Power Supply

Frequently, in working with our electric vehicle customers, there is a need to power 12 volt electronics while a vehicle's ignition is off. This caused us to design this Timer Delay Power Supply system that converts traction pack voltage to 12V and turns on automatically when the ignition circuit is opened. The time can be set to a wide range, but we typically set these to 4 hours. The module is assemble in-house from a custom PCB with sturdy, production-grade harness, potted with thermal compound into an aluminum case that we machine in-house.

A more complete list of services we offer

It’s certainly not a comprehensive list, but might give you some ideas for how we can work together.

PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT

  • Conceptual Design
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Technology Investigation
  • DFM/DFA
  • Rapid Prototyping
  • Design Testing and Validation
  • Third-Party Design Reviews
  • FEA
  • Engineering Drawings/CAD/GD&T

 

MANUFACTURING SUPPORT

  • Test Fixtures
  • Assembly Fixtures
  • Tool Build Support
  • Manufacturer Identification/Qualification

SOFTWARE

  • Computer Vision
  • Linux Development
  • ROS Development
  • 2D / 3D Simulation
  • Web API / Interfaces
  • Embedded Development
  • Path / Motion Planning
  • Drivers / HW Integration
  • Multi-Bot Systems
  • Navigation
  • Build / Deploy Automation

 

ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING

  • Schematic Capture
  • Layout
  • Rapid PCB prototyping
  • Cable / Wire Harnesses
  • Full Electronics Lab

ROBOTICS HARDWARE

  • Mobile Bases
  • End Effectors
  • Sensor Integration
  • Custom Motors / Actuators
  • Custom Omnidirectional Wheels
  • Custom Suspension
  • Packaging / Skins
  • Industrial Design

SOFTWARE TOOLS

  • ROS
  • SolidWorks Premium with PDM Professional
  • SolidWorks Simulation Professional
  • Labview

Quick-Turn and Volume Manufacturing

For your in-house designs, use us as a precision machine shop and assembly house. Typical lead times for machined parts under two weeks.

CAPABILITIES

  • Parts built to print
  • Intelligence applied in not building to print when it benefits you
  • Design For Manufacture (DFM) consulting
  • Build to model (assuming a quality model)
  • Create engineering drawings
  • Prototype assembly
  • Turn-key assembly manufacturing
  • Design consulting
  • Wire harness manufacturing
  • PCB manufacturing

MACHINERY

  • Haas VF-3 CNC mill with all the bells and whistles
  • Haas TL-1 CNC lathe
  • Bridgeport Manual Milling Machine with DRO
  • Clausing Manual Lathe with DRO
  • Powermatic Model 87 vertical bandsaw
  • Jet Horizontal Bandsaw
  • Vibratory Deburring Tumbler
  • Miller Syncrowave 180SD TIG welder with pulser unit