At a time when Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR) keep rapidly reshaping industries like logistics and manufacturing, we’re thrilled to introduce you to our ROSCon 2023 Platform Partner; Husarion. Together, we are merging the world-class capabilities of Ubuntu Core with Husarion’s state-of-the-art robotics platforms.
As we unveil our collaboration, let’s take a quick glance at the work to be presented at our ROSCon booth, including the sophisticated Panther robot and the introduction of ROS content-sharing snap architectures.
Husarion, our ROSCon 2023 Platform Partner
Since its inception in 2013, Husarion has been pioneering the commercialization of ROS in the robotics industry. As an AMR manufacturer and innovator, Husarion’s commitment lies in making robotics efficient and accessible for all.
Husarion has been contributing to the ROS ecosystem by developing hardware tailored for ROS, offering cloud-based tools, providing open-source resources, and engaging with the community. Their efforts have aided in making ROS more accessible and user-friendly for a broader audience. But they have also inspired other ROS developers to pursue the commercialization of ROS-based robots while championing the use of open source in traditional industries. It is our honor to have Husarion as our ROSCon 2023 Platform Partner.
Canonical’s Platform Partner program is a partnership that allows ROS companies to scale up their DevSecOps infrastructure with technical support from Canonical’s robotics team. Moreover, it’s a spotlight for open-source-first companies to demonstrate their robotics inventions and work in the wider open-source community.
Husarion’s Panther AMR
Panther is Husarion’s new professional-grade AMR. Engineered for robustness, with independent BLDC motors for each of its four wheels, Panther is a testament to adaptability – flourishing in diverse landscapes from agriculture to construction.
Being open-source and running on both ROS & ROS 2, Panther offers developers the luxury of customization. The robot comes equipped with a Raspberry Pi 4B computer, an option of Intel NUC or a Lenovo ThinkStation with Nvidia graphics. It also includes a Teltonika RUTX11 router for reliable Wi-Fi/LTE and GNSS navigation. It boasts features like off-road wheels, a sturdy aluminum frame, IP54 / IP66 protection, and connectors delivering up to 780W power for additional devices.
Panther is a top-tier choice for professionals seeking advanced robotics solutions.
AMR and Ubuntu Core: A Combination of Security and Robustness
The genius of Husarion’s work cannot simply overlook its infrastructure, starting with its operating system for the robot controller. While Ubuntu Desktop provides the best development environment for robotics, Ubuntu Core is the immutable OS for the deployment of end applications.
Ubuntu Core offers a reliable approach to software updates, which is essential for robotic applications like Panther. Its ability to provide over-the-air updates means that robots like Panther can be kept up-to-date without manual oversight. Importantly, these updates come with features like failure rollback and delta updates, which are beneficial for saving bandwidth and ensuring continuity in operations.
In today’s context, with evolving legislation in regions such as the US and EU (like the Cyber Trust Mark), security cannot be overlooked anymore. Ubuntu Core has been developed with a focus on security, incorporating tools and features such as secure boot, FDE (Full Disk Encryption), and industrial security policies. This ensures that Panther’s software stack is protected. Furthermore, Ubuntu Core’s commitment to 10 years of support provides assurance of ongoing security maintenance.
Built upon the foundation of classic Ubuntu, Ubuntu Core allows developers to work within a familiar environment when deploying on Panther. This compatibility makes the integration process straightforward. In essence, the combination of Panther and Ubuntu Core is designed to meet the demands of various sectors that require dependable operations, rigorous security measures, and long-term support.
Embracing Snaps for AMR Applications
With the right OS, comes an upgrade to the software deployment for AMR. Snap provides a solution for consistent software deployment on robots, by bundling ROS applications with their necessary dependencies.
Snap’s content-sharing architecture further refines software organization by breaking down robotic software into distinct components. Instead of a single monolithic package, the software is segmented into:
- ROS Foundational snap: Include core sets of common ROS packages, such as ros_core, ros_base, robot, perception, and desktop. These Foundational snaps are maintained by Canonical and available in several flavours per ROS distribution, giving you the flexibility to choose the components that suit your needs.
- Robot Brain snap: The robot-specific snap that contains everything from sensor drivers to motor controllers and hardware specifics. This component is crucial because it’s where Panther’s uniqueness shines. It’s where you connect the hardware to the software and make Panther ready to use every time.
- Apps: All of your, or third-parties, applications. These are your value-added functionalities that consume bits from the ROS foundational snap and interface with the Robot Brain.
This modular setup promotes efficient updates and customisations, as each segment can be updated independently, reducing the chances of system-wide disruptions.
The content sharing architecture is a new opportunity in robotics software deployment, emphasizing flexibility and efficiency, catering to evolving final user needs. By permitting individual component updates, it reduces bandwidth needs and system overhaul efforts for AMR. This approach not only streamlines app development for Panther but also brings about economic benefits by cutting down library maintenance costs of ROS and other packages in Ubuntu Universe.
In essence, through snaps and the content-sharing architecture, Canonical aims to provide a structured and stable platform for robotic software deployment, prioritizing system reliability, modularity, and security.
The partnership between Canonical and Husarion presented at ROSCon 2023 is a testament to the future of AMR. With innovations like Panther, powered by Ubuntu Core and advanced deployment strategies via snap’s content sharing architectures, robots are more secure and flexible.
Join us in this journey to redefine the boundaries of robotics, see you all in New Orleans!