Pi-Bot - Reinventing Classroom Robotics
The Pi-Bot® is a uniquely designed (and affordable!) complete robot kit for anyone interested in building and programming robots!
We have developed the perfect hands-on learning platform for both students and professional engineers to learn the hardware and software of robotics. We launched our Kickstarter campaign to go into full-production for our Pi-Bot® on February 9th, 2014.
Some universities that have introduced the Pi-Bot are:
- University of California Berkeley (UC Berkeley)
- California State Polytechnic University of Pomona (Cal Poly Pomona)
- University of California Irvine (UC Irvine)
Some schools that have introduced the Pi-Bot are:
- Valley Christian School, Cerritos, CA, USA
- David School, David, KY, USA
- Monte Vista School, Monte Vista, CA, USA
- Knox Grammar School, Sydney, NSW, Australia
- Ridgeview Classical Schools, Fort Collins, CO, USA
- Ravenswood School for Girls, Sydney, NSW, Australia
Some organizations & companies that we are partnering with to introduce Pi-Bots in the community are:
- Google with the Bronx, NY Per Scholas program
- UC Berkeley with the Engineering Summer for Girls program
- IMC Chicago
- NCWIT (National Center for Women & Information Technology) with the Kalania Robotics Team in Honolulu, Hawaii
So what is the Pi-Bot®?
We engineered the Pi-Bot® from the ground up through several design cycles to optimize function while staying affordable. We continue to work with students to make our designs appealing, and work with experts in the area of robotics to improve our designs.
We field tested our Pi-Bots with a small group of high school and college students. The response has been remarkable. This is the kit we wish we had growing up!
Pi-Bot® is unique:
- Modular platform for interchangeable sensors
- Standardized Arduino C programming
- Novel chassis design minimizes weight while maintaining strength
- Fully accessible microprocessor for easy connections
- Slide in battery pack
- Additional microprocessors can be used simply replacing the support plate
- Develops practical knowledge by using real electronic components
- All for a low cost!
Our laser-cut chassis ensures high precision and durability. The unique "Pi" shape is optimized to minimize weight with high strength.
We give you the flexibility to design your own projects with included line following and ultrasonic distance sensors. The modular chassis allows sensors to be moved and positioned for your convenience. No soldering is needed to fully construct your Pi-Bot®!
We are currently developing an assortment of new sensors and motors for even more capabilities in the future. The Pi-Bot® kit is flexible and can be used for years.
Just as humans rely on skeletons, robots need a solid chassis to move around. Our Pi-Bot® shape was not born overnight. In fact, we didn't even set out to design a “Pi” shaped robot! We explored various shapes and sizes, experimented with multiple CAD models and tried out numerous laser-cutting test cycles. We considered everything from a boring, but easy to make, rectangular chassis all the way to a circular “Pie" Bot (where sensors would be added on like toppings). Here’s a look at some of our original designs and prototypes!
After reviewing many, many options, we discovered the Pi shape was the most functional, practical and elegant. Who knew a “π” could be the most efficient robot chassis possible!?
Even within the Pi shape itself, we had numerous iterations. Our final design was subjected to finite element analysis and optimization. Our original Pi-Bot was about 2 times the height and had 4 DC motors with wheels. Our Pi-Bot® today has evolved into a much more aerodynamic and speedier version with a gearbox.
Pi-Bot is an Arduino compatible project! The STEM Board is Arduino-derived.