Balancing robots: demonstration of the most important features of 5G network technology


The power of 5G network technology for robotic communication

My name is Marleen Roubos and, together with my classmate Yannick van Dolen, I study technical informatics at Avans University of Applied Sciences in Breda, The Netherlands. During our internship at Ericsson, I developed and built eight self-balancing robots, while Yannick focused on developing an Android app and an accurate tracking solution. Think GPS, but more precise and suitable for indoor environments.

We gave each robot its own color and name, and when in the correct order, the first letter of each name featured the name ERICSSON. Smart, right?

We wanted to show how technology could allow us to smoothly control robots through the Android app inside, either manually or automatically. If in automatic mode, the robots could behave without human interference, and to let them more easily do their own thing, Yannick has removed the steering controls on the Android application. In autonomous driving mode, the robots could also communicate with the robot in front, allowing them to follow it while avoiding any accidents. If the robot fell, there was no need for a human hand to help it as it would simply return to its equilibrium state with the help of its integrated arm and tail. Having said that, we had to work with very fine margins of error. In this case, latency was the key. If our calculations were only a few milliseconds behind, the information would already be too old for the robot to be processed. It was therefore very important that the robot have the information at the right time, so that it maintains its balance.

Our demonstration mimicked the Talking Traffic project, where Ericsson and other partners used the cloud and IoT to create a nationwide intelligent vehicle and road infrastructure (IVRI) system. For balancing robots, the idea was to use GPS to determine the location of other robots. But due to the lack of accuracy of the GPS for the demands of this project, the team was able to calculate the position of each robot by mimicking the GPS via a colored LED on each robot and tracking them with a camera, the application of camera sends GPS type information to each robot. so they know where they are.

Film about robots in balance

Explore 5G opportunities in close collaboration

Faced with the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, we have always received so much help from the Ericsson volunteers, who have visited us regularly in the office, to check on the progress of the project and to offer advice. . and the support we needed. It really felt like some of our Ericsson team had gone the extra mile to share their own ideas and thoughts with us, which created a really collaborative spirit and an exciting dynamic, something that is a little different for everyone. world nowadays.

I feel like Ericsson’s ethics and culture were amazing. We laughed a lot and despite COVID, we met so many different people. Everyone was very willing to help us on all kinds of different topics, especially Jan Oude Vrielink, Solutions Architect at Ericsson, who was our supervisor and worked with us every day. We felt like we had found a place to which we belonged and to be able to develop and showcase all our skills!

Future 5G network technological collaborations

This demonstration contained all critical hardware, software and network elements. The space we worked in was so inspiring because it’s not just an empty room where no one goes, it’s actually a place where Ericsson shows off their latest and most innovative work, and where experts Ericsson are always on hand and more than happy to give. Support.

It was music to my ears to hear that a follow-up mission is underway within the +31 Ericsson team, where even more Cloud and 5G aspects could be added. I just wish we could have stayed longer! It was so much fun; sometimes you can forget that this is a job. Many thanks to Ericsson for the opportunity to collaborate with such a creative and innovative team.

Watch this place

Watch the video about the ‘Balancing Robots’ demo.

Learn more about the future of working with Ericsson 5G.

Learn more about internships at Ericsson.


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