Analog Twins: Development of Wirelessly Communicating Robotic Twins with Multiple Degrees of Freedom

Open Access
Graham, Nathaniel D
Area of Honors:
Mechanical Engineering
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Md Amanul Haque, Thesis Supervisor
  • Stephanie Stockar, Honors Advisor
  • Digital Twins
  • Arduino
  • nrf24l01+
  • optimization
Digital twinning is a concept which takes a physical object and collects phenomenon from the object, importing that information into a simulation, optimizing behavior in simulation, and returning it for better performance. The question which follows is what if one changes the purpose of digital twinning into purely movement copying and creates two independent objects that move together wirelessly? The objective of this study is to demonstrate the digital twin concept using two robotic objects that could mirror each other via a wireless connection and establish a protocol for such. Arduino Unos and nrf24l01+ transceiver modules are used in this study to create the connection and Arduino code, a derivative of C/C++, is developed to collect movement readings of a 2dof system. Two robots from VEX, specifically their Clawbot, with four degrees of freedom each are used. Original’, the robot given a movement command first, acts as a parent and potentiometers are used to collect data which are then wirelessly sent to Copy, which is the child. ‘Copy’is programmed to receive and move to reproduce the movements of ‘Original’ in real time based on the measurements collected and transmitted wirelessly. This study tests the reproduction of movement across two degrees of freedom, one in the arm movement of the robots and one in the claw movement of the robots. This study presents a preliminary proof of concept where Copy is capable of mirroring the movements of Original on multiple degrees of freedom. The movements are delayed by seconds but accurate in position. They can be improved by further investigating movement delays and mapping functions to compensate time delays and relative movement.