Using cheap IMU tradeoffs?

Hi everyone,

My team bought a cheap IMU for the quadruped (SparkFun VR IMU Breakout - BNO080) and were wondering what we should expect from a much cheaper option compared to the Lord IMU. What tradeoffs are we looking at or potential issues? Could this be good enough for the robot to perform?

Thanks in advance!


That it is difficult to say, It will highly depend on what kind of controller you want to implement, and how much it rely on state feedback to stabilise the robot.

I can list a list of a few challenges you will have to face:

  • The IMU we use includes a filter that provide estimation of the orientation of the robot and acceleration unbiased from the gravity. With the bosh IMU, you will need to implement state estimation yourself by using a kalman filter or complementary filter for example.
  • I expect your IMU to be more noisy and drift more with temperature
  • The connection protocol with the masterboard needs to be re implemented (using UART or SPI), or the IMU needs to be connected by an other link with your control computer.

If you follow this path, please keep us posted. It is interested to have alternative solutions for this expensive sensors.

BTW, The next version of the motor driver includes Bosh IMU (BMI088). I still have to evaluate those sensor and see if it helps to have several of them in different places of the robot.

Best, Thomas.

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