Moving Your Rover Robot

Once you receive your robot you will probably want to move it. And good news, that's super easy to do!

If you purchased a computer from us with your robot, just power on your robot, plug in the power and communication cables to the computer and wait for it to start the code. Connect a monitor and mouse and keyboard to the computer as well to be able to access the desktop!

If you need to set up a computer, follow our GitHub instructions for quick and easy setup!

PS4 Controller

With the PS4 controller, press the 'PS' button and wait for it to turn a solid blue, once it does you can move the robot with the joysticks and adjust speed with the d-pad.


With your robot and computer powered and communicating, you can use the console to send commands to the robot using the /cmd_vel topic! To bring up the console on Ubuntu, right click and select "Open in Terminal", then enter the below code. Changing the linear X to a positive number goes forward and a negative number goes backward. The angular Z will turn left and right. Use cmd+c (mac) or ctrl+c (windows) to cancel the command.

  • When setting out to move for the first time it may be best to put the robot on block to make sure it doesn't run away from you while testing!


rostopic pub /managed/joy geometry_msgs/Twist "{linear: {x: 0.0, y: 0.0, z: 0.0}, angular: {x: 0.0, y: 0.0, z: 0.0}}" -r 10 


ros2 topic pub /cmd_vel geometry_msgs/Twist "{linear: {x: 0.0, y: 0.0, z: 0.0}, angular: {x: 0.0, y: 0.0, z: 0.0}}" -r 10


You can SSH into the payload computer to send console/terminal commands wirelessly. Connect the payload computer to your wi-fi and make note of the IP address. Then on another computer, SSH into the robot via that IP address. All you have to do is use the command:

' ssh '


Trouble Turning?

Sometimes the rubber track is tight when the robot first arrives and the robot will have trouble moving at very low speeds, particularly when turning. The belts will loosen a bit as the robot drives more.

While there is some variation depending on the friction of the surface the robot is driving on, we typically see the Rover able to turn at +/-0.3 rad/s in closed loop configuration and +/-0.9 rad/s in open loop configuration (editing the angular Z).

If it takes significantly more than either of those speeds to turn the robot, first try a different surface for the robot to drive on and test again. If there is still trouble, contact us here.

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