The undergraduate Robotics Lab is the facility where the three pillars of robotics engineering (mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and computer science) are integrated into robot projects. The lab follows the format of a “tinker space” allowing students access to modular equipment along with the components needed to build and test a variety of robotic systems. Students design and construct micro-controller boards, robot platforms and arms, and write the software to make them perform.
The lab is currently outfitted with five workstations that can accommodate teams of 3 to 4 students each; they are equipped with power sources, signal generators, oscilloscopes, soldering stations, and National Instruments data acquisition systems. Various electronic and mechanical components are available for build projects, in addition to some robotic arms, LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT kits, and various control boards and robotic platforms. Basic robot kits are provided for the lab assignments that go with the robotics classes, and facilities are available for the construction of more advanced robotic devices ranging from automatic plant watering robots to autonomous flying vehicles. A large island area is available for use as a test track for autonomous mobile robots.