Qualcomm 5G and AI-enabled robotics platform

Qualcomm 5G and AI-enabled robotics platform

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Qualcomm Technologies’ Robotics RB5 platform is an advanced, integrated solution that builds ion the company’s Qualcomm Robotics RB3 platform.
By Ally Winning


The RB5 platform consists of hardware, software and development tools. It combines the company’s expertise in 5G and AI to allow the development of high-compute, low-power robots and drones with comprehensive customization and flexibility options.

Qualcomm engaged many companies, including 20+ early adopters in the process of evaluating the platform. Over 30 ecosystem members are engaged in the process of developing hardware and software to provide robotics applications including: 96Boards, Acontis, ADLINK, AirMap, AirServe, Airtonomy, AlwaysAI, Augmented Pixels, Autocore, Autoware Foundation, Canonical, DeepEdge.ai, DreamVu, Dronecode, Fractal.ai, GlobalEdge, Innominds Software, InOrbit, Intel RealSense, Lantronix, Linaro, LiteOn, Kudan, ModalAI, Nod, Open Robotics, Panasonic, PathPartners, Pilot.AI, Shoreline IoT, SLAMCORE, TDK, Thundercomm, and Tier IV.

The platform is based around a Qualcomm QRB5165 processor, which integrates an Octa Core Qualcomm Kryo 585 CPU, Qualcomm Adreno 650 GPU, multiple DSPs (compute, audio and sensor) and ISPs. The processor is supported by the fifth-generation Qualcomm AI Engine, which is capable of delivering 15 Tera Operations Per Second (TOPS) of AI performance for complex AI and deep learning workloads. It also provides machine learning (ML) inferencing at the edge under restricted power budgets using the Qualcomm Hexagon Tensor Accelerator (HTA). Qualcomm’s HTA is a powerful image signal processor (ISP) that can support seven concurrent cameras, and a dedicated computer vision engine for enhanced video analytics (EVA). Support for 4G and 5G connectivity speeds is provided through a companion module.

The Qualcomm Robotics RB5 platform and the Qualcomm QRB5165 processor allow various design solutions including off-the-shelf system-on-modules and flexible chip-on-board designs. The platform has many options, including commercial and industrial-grade temperature ranges and one for an extended lifecycle until 2029.

The platform offers support for Linux, Ubuntu and Robot Operating System (ROS) 2.0, as well as pre-integrated drivers for cameras, sensors and 5G connectivity. It also supports OpenCL, OpenGLES and OpenCV. For depth-sensing capabilities, the RB5 Development Kit provides support for the Intel RealSense Depth Camera D435i and Panasonic TOF Camera.

Qualcomm has partnered with TDK to enhance the RB5 Robotics Development Kit with TDK’s 6-axis, high performance ICM-42688-P IMU, an ICP-10111 barometric pressure sensor and a T5818 Digital (PDM) bottom port microphone. The development kit also contains TDK’s ultrasonic Time-Of-Flight CH101 and CH201 solutions and embedded motor control (HVC4223F) and IMU with built-in redundancy (IIM-46220). Additional incorporated TDK technologies include Hall effect and temperature sensors and validated and verified software algorithms.

Finally, the Qualcomm Robotics RB5 Development Kit utilizes 96Boards Consumer Edition Specification which helps offer versatility for creating innovative proof-of-concepts and rapid prototyping.

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