Nowadays, many kinds of robots are used in industries to help in manufacturing or placing objects. However, teaching young people and children about robot design and work can be difficult, turning this into a complicated area for them. This chapter provides a detailed description of the design and implementation of a robotic arm mounted on a mobile robot using the LEGO Mindstorms NXT kit® and the starter kit DaNI 2.0, designed by National Instruments®. The mobile palletizer robot takes a box from place A and navigates in the indoor environment until it reaches a predefined place B. The characterization of the robotic arm is based on a parallel structure considering that the end-effector has only two points to hold the object; the gripper is also built using LEGO®. The robot performs the path computed using an A-star algorithm; moreover, actions like moving up and down, opening and closing the gripper and picking up the box and putting it down are executed by the robotic arm using the central unit of the NXT kit. Each stage of the robot design and implementation is explained in detail using diagrams and 3D graphical views with the aim of illustrating the implementation step by step for educational purposes (mainly for young people or children).
Part of the book: Advanced Path Planning for Mobile Entities