I am pleased to announce that SRI International, a Microsoft Robotics Studio partner, has now released its Karto SDK that is designed to work with Microsoft Robotics Studio. The Karto SDK provides developers with the ability to easily add autonomous navigation for their robotics applications. Included in this release are the following services:
- Mapping: use sensor input to create a precise virtual model in real time of the robot’s environment while the robot is moving
- Path Planning: compute the optimal path to take from the robot’s current position to a specified target position
- Exploration: determine the sequence of moves the robot will make in order to completely cover an area so that all reachable locations have been traversed
- Obstacle Avoidance: detect previously unknown objects or environmental features and modify the robot’s path accordingly while maintaining a viable path to its target destination
By using all of the modules of the Karto SDK in conjunction with each other, developers can create fully autonomous, self-exploring robots for indoor applications.
Karto supports Sick or Hokuyo laser rangefinders for mapping.
Here are some cool pictures illustrating the use/operation:
Picture1: Exploration points generated by Karto in a partially explored map.
Picture 2: Path generated by Karto to one of the exploration points.
In this demo you can see an autonomous, self exploring robot: Movie 1
The software can be downloaded by requesting a 30 day evaluation license from: http://www.kartorobotics.com/products/licensing.php