The IR3-D2–Have you seen this???

The IR3-D2 is an amusing robot featured on I mean…it has an R2-D2 head! How cool is that? While that aspect of this robot is amusing, it has some other neat features. It’s a mobile robot designed for autonomous movement. It is set up to be able to identify and avoid obstacles as it rolls around the living room, or wherever it’s being used.


The IR3-D2 is more or less its creator’s hobby project and isn’t really designed for a utilitarian purpose. It doesn’t disarm bombs. It doesn’t build cars. It basically amounts to a toy robot, though it’s probably best used by an adult. A minimum of $300 was probably spent in building it, and kids have a way of breaking things.


Some of its fun little features include remote control initiated modes like dancing much in the same way the original R2 unit would while playing the Star Wars theme song, finding light and the “shoot it” mode using a laser pointer. It also has a controllable volume for the sounds. Can you imagine having this thing sitting on your floor, then firing it up when the cat comes near to it? It’s worth having for this reason alone.


It has an AIRRS analog infrared range-finding system. It has 3 sensors on the front to see obstacles from 20 cm away, and one sensor on the back mounted on a servo as a multidirectional eye. It has modified servos for its drive-rotational R2-D2 head, a Laser Bright LED for a pointer plus 4 cds cells mounted on it for the find light function.


It has a BASIC Stamp for its CPU, a Board of Education Development board, controls for the AIRRS analog infrared range finding system, 2 Hitec servos to drive it, 2 servos by Futaba for the head and the eyes on the rear. Of course, it has a small speaker for the sounds with a small amp circuit and a detector module from Radio Shack. BASIC is used for its programming language.


Top this all off with a Lego R2-D2 top gotten from KFC, some creative use of plexiglass and hot glue, and add three wheels, and it’s ready to go. Your cat probably won’t show its face ever again.


While this model isn’t nearly as sophisticated as its inspiration, it’s still a neat little toy. It may never save the galaxy, but vexing the cat is pretty fun too. Unfortunately, this model most likely isn’t for sale. It’s a one of a kind robot, built by its designer for his own amusement.


On the other hand, based on its components, it looks like a modified Boe Bot. Kits for these can be bought online at various places for around $150 to $200. You could get one of these, find yourself an R2-D2 top and the rest of the components and have one of your own. Of course, you might have to work your robot building skills to do it.

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