It is a challenge to design and build humanoid robots since in the same body have to be integrated a wide range of systems designed for interaction with tools, objects, or with humans. During the last few years, an increased attention is directed to humanoid robots while with every biped robot used in the education of for researcher purposes the robotics world becomes more and more full of intelligence.
With a huge increase in the humanoid robot development, the company releases from toys to advanced human-like robotic platforms at an affordable price for an intelligent machinery. Unfortunately, the price is still high compared with other smart gadgets like smartphones or computers. Some of these robots can come with a price near a luxury car and less than a price of a toy or for an educational platform.
Even in this article are presented cheapest advanced humanoid robots used in competition, education, or just for entertainment, each of these metal and plastic intelligent machinery are used to develop the next generation of humanoid platforms, an autonomous generation able to do things as well as a human and all of these at an affordable price.
01. Kumotek KT-X | Around €1,047 EUR (~$1,400 USD)
Kumotek KT-X is a low-cost humanoid robot designed for entertainment and educational purpose. The robot took shape in the labs of KumoTek Robotics and Vstone Corporation and the idea is to build cheap alternative to bipedal high-end robotics.
KT-X is easy to use and offer a wide variety of entertainment. The body was built from aluminum alloy and offer a high resistance to mechanical strain while is lightweight. The head has integrated two green LED and can be rotated in the direction of movement of the robot. The arms and legs are powered by 17 actuators and has 17 degrees of freedom.
Used in education, the robot has a user-friendly programming interface and requires low to medium experience in robotic programming.
Inside the body is a 60MHz HV processor with 512kB ROM and 64kB RAM. For balance, the robot uses a gyro and an accelerometer sensor.
For control is using a wireless game-pad remote control with a lot of buttons for all features control.
- Height: 34 cm(13.5-inch);
- Width:15 cm (6-inch);
- Depth: 6 cm (2.5-inch);
- Weight: 1.3 Kg (2.9 lbs);
- Degrees of Freedom: 17;
- CPU: H8 — 60MHz HV processor with 512kB ROM;
- RAM Memory: 64kB;
- Servo Actuators: 17 with 9.2kg cm torque;
- Actuator Speed: 0.11sec/60deg;
02. Manoi AT01 | Around €1,870 EUR (~$2,500 USD)
Manoi AT01 starts the list with advanced humanoid robot designed to be used in robotics competitions. Build by iXs Research Corporation, the AT01 is easily customizable with detachable faceplates used to customize the robot in the user own style.
Manoi AT01 has 17 degrees of freedom, which allow the structure to move in a natural way. It has an advanced elasticity and could perform a long list of movements and actions, or to rotate its arms up to 260 degrees. All 17 servos can be controlled with an instant reaction from them. In addition, the customizable structure allows adding new sensors like a gyro. Used in competitions or for entertaining the robot can move in any direction, run, dance and even play football.
Inside the body, AT01 has integrated the Nickel Hybrid battery with 3000mAh capacity and the Kondo Kagaku Control Board.
- Arm rotation: up to 260 degrees;
- Degrees of Freedom:17;
- Servos: 17;
- Battery: Nickel Hybrid 300mAh;
03. Manoi PF01 | Around €3,500 EUR (~$4,700 USD)
Manoi PF01 is in the same range as AT01 and is built by the same company – iXs Research Corporation. Built with 17 actuators, the robot has a total of 17 degrees of freedom, which ensure a high flexibility in movement. The company redesigns the actuators and the result is actuators that are more powerful. They ensure a high-speed, high-level of accuracy, and a high torque in motion. A lithium polymer battery powers all these actuators, which are recyclable.
In motion, the robot uses two gyro sensors along with one accelerometer sensor. Using programming lines the robot can be controlled to reproduce a lot of movements.
- Height: 40 cm (15.7-inch);
- Dimension: 34 cm x 18 cm (13.3- inch x 7-inch);
- Arm length: 15 cm (5.9 -inch);
- Actuator: 17;
- Brackets/ Body coaling: 1 pc;
- Control board (RCB-3): 1 pc;
- Lipo saver board: 1 pc;
- Gyro sensors: 2;
- Lithium polymer battery: 3 pcs;
04. Kumotek KT-X Gladiator PRO | Around €4,100 EUR (~$5,500 USD)
KT-X Gladiator PRO is the high-end series of KT-X humanoid robot designed by KumoTek Robotics and Vstone Corporation. It uses great features and could be found at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. The idea behind the robot is to create a great robotic platform for hobby and entertainment.
With a total of 19 degrees of freedom and a wide range of 18 actuators, KT-X Gladiator PRO has a high flexibility and lift objects or even others robots on its back.
The company uses KT-S281J servos to create torque and the final product has more torque, is more reliable and has high accuracy in movements.
With an increased power, the engineers installed safety mechanism to ensure a good operation of robot. The brain of the robot is an 60MHz HV processor which uses 64KB of RAM memory.
For a great flexibility and movements, the Gladiator PRO has internal gyro and accelerometer sensors.
- Height: 38,3 cm (15 -inch);
- Width: 18 cm (7-inch);
- Depth: 7,3 cm (2.9-inch);
- Weight: 1.96 Kg (42 lbs);
- Processor: 60MHz HV;
- RAM Memory: 64KB;
- Play: .wav files and action noises;
- Degrees of Freedom: 19;
- Control: Wireless game-pad remote control;
- Language: English or Japanese;
- Sensors: 3 axis accelerometer (2 axis used), 2 axis gyro, acceleration sensor;
- Torque: 28.5kg/cm;
- Speed: 0.11s/60;
05. DARwIn-OP | Around €10,600 EUR (~$14,200 USD)
Designed in RoMeLa labs, DARwIn-OP or ‘Dynamic Anthropomorphic Robot with Intelligence – Open Platform’ is part of DARwIn humanoid robot series developed since 2004. The idea behind the robot is to create a platform used in research or education purposes.
The robotic platform is based on the open concept platform and comes with a modular design and the possibility to change both hardware and software. With free CAD files for all components, any user can build custom parts.
Used by researchers and educators, the open-source robotic platform includes powerful computational power, greater flexibility, and accuracy sensors.
- Height: 45,5 cm (17.9-inch);
- Weight: 2.8 kg (6.2 lb);
- Motors: Robotis Dynamixel;
- Computing: FitPC;
- Vision: USB Webcam;
- Power: Li-Po batteries;
06. Kumotek KT-X PC | Around €10,850 EUR (~$14,500 USD)
Kumotek company is a great resource for advanced and cheap humanoid robots. KT-X PC is an advanced platform designed to be used in extended researchers. As an open platform, the robot can be improved with high-end equipment. It already has integrated reliable communication and network capabilities, which are a plus and allows the platform to be used in for human-robot connections.
It has a lightweight frame body and shockproof pads. The bipedal robot has an enhanced stability, which uses two latest generations of metal gear servos. Besides powerful actuators used to create mobility and flexibility, inside the robot are incorporated gyro and accelerometer sensors, camera for visibility, and a powerful processor. The brain is a 1.6GHz Atom Z530 processor and for memory is available an expansion slot.
It has in total 20 degrees of freedom, which are divided in 6 DOF for each leg, 3 DOF for each arm, and the head has 2 DOF.
- Degrees of Freedom: 20 axis (6 leg × 2, 3 arm × 2, 2 head);
- Servo: KT-S281J (6) KT-S092J (14);
- Processor: AXIOMTEK PICO820 Intel Atom Z530 (1.6 GHz frequency);
- Sub-CPU: VS-RC003HV, ARM7 60MHz;
- Sensors: VS-IX001×1 (2 axis gyro plus 3 axis accelerometer);
- Camera: 1.3 CMOS Mega Pixel (2 axis);
- Interface: USB2.0×2, RGB×1, LAN (10/100/1000MBase-TX) x 1;
07. NAO Next Gen | Around €13,500 EUR (~$18,000 USD)
Developed by Aldebaran Robotics, NAO has reached the second generation and comes with enhanced audio and video capabilities, more natural motion, and is more intelligent. The biped robot is fully autonomous and can be used in education, research, by companies, or just for a hobby.
NAO Next Gen is an open platform for programming and allows user to customize hardware components. It has the ability to learn and can catch the attention with his improved skills for entertainment.
The head has two degrees of freedom and is used for vision and to hear. For vision has integrated two cameras with SOC image sensor and 1.22MP resolution. Both cameras provide a view of 72.6°DFOV with a focus range between 30 cm to infinity.
Image-processing process can use up to 30 high definition images in one second. All these images can be captured while the head moves with 239 degrees horizontally and 68 degrees vertically. NAO has the ability to recognize and store the objects in his own memory using Choregraphe software.
The biped robot can recognize not just objects. Using the same system NAO detects faces and uses natural voices in conversation. It is a multilingual robot with nine languages and right punctuation and intonation.
The head is not used just for vision. Microphones incorporated into the head can detect and localize in the environment the noise.
The brain is a powerful Intel ATOM Z530 processor with a working frequency of 1.6Ghz and uses 1GB RAM memory. For storage is available up to 8GB of space. The robot runs under GNU/Linux and can be programmed in many programming languages including C++, Python, .NET, Java, or MatLab.
The total degrees of freedom are 24 and are divided between head with 2 DOF, arms with a total of 10 DOF, pelvis with 1 DOF, legs with a total of 10 DOF, and hands with 2 DOF.
- Height: 58 cm (23-inch);
- Weight: 4.3 Kg (9.5-lbs);
- Autonomy:60 minutes in active use and 90 minutes in normal use;
- Degrees of Freedom: 24;
- Processor: Intel Atom with 1.6GHz;
- Built-in OS: Linux;
- Compatible OS:Windows, Mac OS, Linux;
- Programming languages: C++, Python, Java, MATLAB, Urbi, C, .Net;
- Vision: Two HD 1280×960 cameras;
- Connectivity: Ethernet, Wi-Fi;
08. Kumotek VisiON 4G | Around €33,000 EUR (~$44,000)
Again the couple formed by KumoTek Robotics and Vstone built one of the most advanced and autonomous humanoid robot used in researchers. It has the full English support and can be used all around the world in research purposes by universities or focused research groups.
Compared with other robots from its class, VisiON 4G is the most advanced humanoid robot with advanced design, motion, vision and autonomy. It can communicate using a wireless network with other robots and can be used by researchers for interaction between robots and humans.
VisiON 4G has a great flexibility with a total of 20 degrees of freedom. A wide range of sensors is included in the body, from image sensors to capture images, accelerometer sensor for gravity, gyro sensor for angular velocity detection, and to temperature sensors for temperature of actuators.
- Height: 45 cm (17.7-inch);
- Width: 25 cm (9.8-inch);
- Weight: 3.3 Kg (7.27 lbs);
- Degree Of Freedom: 20;
- Walking speed: 33cm/sec;
- Camera: 33Mpixel 60fps;
Update on 31.07.2013