Fundamental Research

Robotics Cape

The Robotics Cape brings the power of the BeagleBone Black to your robotics project with almost no setup time. Built by engineers for engineers, the Robotics Cape is loaded with innovative features and a library designed to effortlessly take your robotics concepts from design to reality.

Comprehensive Onboard Hardware

9-Axis IMU and Barometer
The MPU-9250 IMU to give the user quick attitude data for feedback control and even flight control. The install package includes several examples to demonstrate running tightly-timed feedback control off the sensor’s internal clock. Check your altitude with a BMP280 barometer.

Servo/ESC Control
Control up to 8 Servos or ESCs with low-latency pulses generated immediately and accurately timed by the PRU. Most servos are only rated for 6V operation so a built-in 4A switching power regulator allows stable and safe power for servos without the need for a BEC.

DC Motor Control
Control up to 4 DC motors from your 2-Cell Lithium battery with simple and optimized library functions. High frequency PWM and 4 full H-bridges provide smooth and quiet operation.

Read Standard DSM RC Radios
Give your robot wireless joystick control and disarming ability with easy to use commands to pair, calibrate, and read both DSM2 and DSMX satellite receivers.

Put and end to jumper cables, breadboards, and spaghetti wiring by simply plugging your robot’s serial sensors, motor controllers, and ancillaries straight into your Robotics Cape to ensure none of your BeagleBone’s features are left untapped.

Quadrature Encoder Counting
All 3 eQEP encoder counting channels are broken out to connectors with power for easy wiring. Furthermore, a PRU-accelerated 4th encoder channel is available.

Battery Management

2-Cell Lithium Pack
Don’t waste time swapping batteries to charge your robot. The Robotics Cape will charge, balance, and protect a 2-Cell lithium battery to provide power to servos, motors, and the BeagleBone itself to make your robot truly wireless. The pack is protected from over-charging and over-discharging to keep your batteries healthy.

Battery Charging and Power
Instead of using a 5V DC input to power the BeagleBone, you can now give anywhere from 8V to 18V DC through a standard barrel jack to power the BeagleBone and charge any 2-Cell lithium battery.

Battery Monitoring and LED Indicator
Battery indicator LEDs on the board let the user see the state of a 2S, 3S, or 4S battery from a distance. Also access battery voltage from within your program to do with as you please.

Intuitive Codebase

Built for developers.
Our codebase was developed from the ground up with robotics prototyping in mind. A thorough collection of over 230 functions are provided to make interfacing with your hardware as effortless as possible. Also included are 29 example command-line programs so you can touch hardware without writing a single line of code.

Set up in five minutes.
The entire Robotics Cape code base comes in a singleDebian package, designed to configure your BeagleBone for a robotics project as effortlessly as possible.

Open-source. Completely.
Want to look under the hood? No problem. We’ve made sure all libraries are open-source and developed ample documentation for you. Check out our software and hardware repositories.