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Clearpath Robotics Launches TurtleBot 4 Learning Platform

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May 4, 2022

Clearpath Robotics, which manufactures mobile robotic platforms for research and development, and Open Robotics, the primary maintainer of the Robot Operating System (ROS) and Gazebo simulator, have launched TurtleBot 4. 

The next-generation of the open-source robotics platform is a low-cost, fully expandable mobile robotics platform that includes improved sensing, increased payload capacity, ROS 2 support, and auto-docking capabilities. The system is aimed at educators, researchers and robotics developers.

“This year marks 10 years since we started working with the Open Robotics’ founding team on the TurtleBot 2,” said Bryan Webb, president of Clearpath Robotics. “We are very excited to continue our support for the open source community by providing cutting-edge technology for robotics research, development, and education. TurtleBot 4 offers automatic charging, the latest sensors and computing, as well as larger and heavier payload support. Furthermore, Clearpath Robotics is committed to offering a world-class user experience at an affordable price point.”

The TurtleBot 4 platform is now available in two models – Standard and Lite. Both versions are built on the iRobot Create 3 educational robot, which includes built-in technology such as an inertial measurement unit (IMU), optical floor tracking sensor, wheel encoders, and infrared sensors for accurate localization, navigation and telepresence. A two-dimensional lidar and front-facing spatial artificial intelligence stereo camera are fully integrated with the mobile base, which makes it ideal for SLAM and AI-based testing. Both models also include a charging dock, allowing for autonomous docking and battery charging.

With the Standard model, users can customize and expand the robot by integrating additional sensors and accessories via a powered USB hub, power breakouts, and the top mounting plate. A programmable OLED screen lets users quickly display information from any of the ROS topics, as well as the platform’s IP address to let users quickly connect the robot to Wi-Fi.

The system is equipped with a Raspberry Pi 4 computer running ROS 2, and all onboard sensor data are available as ROS topics via the network-connected ROS 2 application programming interface (API). TurtleBot 4 also ships fully assembled with ROS 2 pre-installed and configured, along with user documentation, a Gazebo simulation model, and demo code. Also included is courseware materials, lesson plans, lecture content, tutorials, and sample tests for educators that want to integrate TurtleBot into robotics training courses.

TurtleBot 4 Standard ($1,850) and Lite ($1,195) are available in North America, Europe and Asia through authorized global distributors, and will begin shipping in July 2022. More details are available here.

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