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Global Specialties Intros Robotic Arm for Teaching Engineering

Global Specialities, a developer of electronics training products, has introduced a robotic arm designed to help teach basic electronics, mechanics and programming.

The R700 Vector Robotic Arm is made of heavy gauge aluminum. According to the company, it arrives fully assembled and can be programmed with the C programming language out-of-the-box using the free and open source WinAVR software development tools. Instructors and students can also use the supplied USB interface and RobotLoader software to download numerous example programs to the robot's ATMEGA64 microcontroller.

Once the robot has been programmed, students can use the included keyboard or Robot Arm Control Software (RACS) to control the robot. The RACS software enables users to record the robot's movements and repeat them as a sequence. Additional modules, such as wireless control, can extend the robot's capabilities.

Key features of the R700 Vector Robotic Arm include:

  • Heavy gauge aluminum construction;
  • Six servo motors enabling six degrees of movement;
  • Robot control with keyboard or RACS software;
  • ATMEGA64 processor with 64 KB Flash ROM, 4 KB SRAM and 2 KB EEPROM;
  • USB interface;
  • Numerous inputs and outputs;
  • I2C bus to support add-on modules such as wireless control;
  • RobotLoader software for downloading sample programs; and
  • 12V power supply.

The R700 Vector Robotic Arm is available for a list price of $395. A video demonstration of the robotic arm can be found on YouTube, and further information about the device can be found on the company's site.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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