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Quick start

1. Install hamster server - multi-master configuration https://wiki.cogni.io/index.php/HamsterServer

(if your robot was shipped before January 2018 - single-master configuration)

2. Turn on robot

3. Control your agents in hamster.perspective -rqt with mouse, joystick and keyboard:

Select window with agent number:

agents 1-10 switching with 1 ... 0 keyboard buttons

agents 11-20 switching with shift + 1 ... shift + 0

4. See your robot in hamster.rviz

For agents 3-20 change agent number in topic names

Hamster system

Hamster versions

Hamster research teams

The Hamster is being used as a research platform at various institutes

Hamster research papers

Hamster models

Robot's components

Each robots has two raspberry pi computers on board - master and slave, and a low level controller.

Master - Has a wifi connection to the hamster network, provides network access to slave. It also connects to the slave computer directly via ethernet cable.

Slave - Second computer, used primarily for GPS data broadcasting, connected to hamster network via master.

Low level controller - Arduino based board responsible for interaction with hardware components.

Operation modes

Hamster robot is capable of running mapping, localization or outdoor localization (using GPS and IMU).

Switching between modes:

In order to change the operation mode publish std_msgs/String message to /mapping_command topic, containing on e of the following strings:

  • slam
  • localization
  • outdoor


1 rostopic pub /mapping_command std_msgs/String "data: 'slam'"
1 rostopic pub /mapping_command std_msgs/String "data: 'localization'"

When switching from mapping to localization mode, the map is saved by the server, and loaded for localization algorithm.

All maps saved inside ~/hamster_ws/src/hamster_server_launch/maps$

Hamster calibrations and configurations

Hamster F.A.Q

  • Q: What is the Hamster maximum speed
  • A: 1.2m/s
  • Q: What is the Hamster minimum speed
  • A: 0.1 m/s
  • Q: What is the Hamster turning deg sensitivity
  • A: ~1 deg
  • Q: My Hamster turns in place in a suspicious manner. Why is it?
  • A: We call this the Austin Powers turn. This is since the Hamster uses hackerman steering geometry. With 0 linar force and some angular force it results in


Hamster wireless network


  • SSID 2.4Ghz: hamster_net
  • SSID 5.0Ghz: hamster_net5
  • Password: hamsterHAMSTER
  • Network:
  • Netmask:
  • Gateway:


  • User = pi / hamster (on up squared)
  • Password = hamster


  • IP: 10.0.2.n/192.168.n.1


  • IP: 192.168.n.2

n - stands for agent id, e.g agent7 will have

Low level controller

Hamster LLC connection scheme (for V4 and V5)


The LLC board is responsible for interaction with hardware components such as:

  • Motors (drive and steering)
  • Encoders (mainly used for PID controller)
  • IMU
  • Battery monitoring
  • Cut-off (shuts down the platform when battery goes below certain voltage)

The LLC is connected to master computer via UART (serial)

A built-in switch is also provided for the possibility of loading new firmware (voids warranty, can be provided per request)



Usually runs ROS master services, it also loads and publishes the map for localization

Note: hamster robot may be configured to use local ROS master to avoid using dedicated server for this purpose




Majority of hardware is connected to the master pc, it also acts as network gateway for slave


  • WiFi ew-7811uac EDIMAX AC600
  • Camera raspberry Pi module v2
  • LiDar A2M8 (USB)
  • IMU AltIMU-10 v5
  • Ethernet (to slave)
  • Low level controller (via UART)



GPS data broadcaster


  • GPS Mouse - GP-808G
  • Ethernet (to master)


This category has the following 5 subcategories, out of 5 total.