Last year, Hong Kong-based startup MangDang unveiled a small hackable four-legged robotic dog called Mini Pupper for programmers. Now this team has unveiled the second generation of their robot, which is much improved compared to before.
As before, the top of this robotic dog has a flat surface on which optional extras can be attached, including LiDAR or 3D camera modules, but this time, compared to the previous version, it can carry 200 grams of cargo instead of 150 grams. Carry extra with you.
Improved features of the Mini Pupper 2 robotic dog
In addition, the first generation of the robot uses Raspberry Pi 4B processing brains, but Mini Pupper 2 is equipped with Pi Compute 4 module and Arduino microcontrollers. Also, the developers plan to provide support for the new ROS2 operating system alongside Ubuntu and ROS1 for this robotic dog.
The new robot dog also uses closed-loop control to provide smarter functionality and can now work with a mobile app. The LCD display on the front can still display animated expressions, but the touch sensor, microphone and speaker are among the new features of the Mini Pupper 2.
Additionally, each leg of the robot now has its own dedicated microcontroller that oversees three upgraded servos. Also, the Pro version has a position, speed and torque feedback system from each servo, while the regular version of the robotic dog only uses the position feedback system.
The hackable bot is powered by a 1000 mAh battery, but now an external power adapter can be used, which is useful for development and debugging operations.
The Mini Pupper 2 is currently crowdfunding on Kickstarter, and backers can get a fully assembled standard version for $549. Also, its fully assembled Pro model is sold for $649. If all goes according to plan, the device is expected to launch in February 2023.