Omron Robotics and Mechatronics Laboratory 

In April of 2013, the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology unveiled their new Robotics and Mechatronics Laboratory, paid for and equipped by the Omron Foundation, which operates from a portion of the annual sales from Omron Automation and Safety, a manufacturer of control equipment, manufacturing automation systems, electronic components, automotive electronics, and medical equipment.

The design and collaboration for this lab was unbridled by one concept: Northern Illinois students do not limit their engineering knowledge to a single field. In this lab students from all reaches of engineering -Mechanical, Electrical, Industrial, Systems, and Technology- gain extensive experience not just learning advanced concepts in from the other fields, but working together, learning along side the budding engineers from the other fields.  

This lab allows students to work in an open space providing an atmosphere for different departments to organically come together.

Students using this lab take part in advanced robotics and mechatronics [wiki link] classes and cutting-edge research. Students gravitate toward this area where they can explore everything from their senior design projects to building 6-legged robots in their spare time.

Equipment Available to Students

  • 4 teaching lab stations, 2 advanced robotic research stations, 3 large breakout research platforms, telenet projection media system, and of course 100-Mbps wireless internet.
  • Each lab station provides students
    • Rotatable Hanging Flat Screen with Webcam
    • HP Z220 Workstation with Gigabit ethernet
    • Diverse Mechanical/Electrical Toolbox
    • Topward Dual Tracking DC Power Supply (6630D)
    • Tektronics TDS 2012C Oscilloscope (100MHz, 2GS/s)
    • Soldering Station
    • Overhead Magnifying Lamp
  • The two robotics station Includes the same equipment as the 4 teaching lab stations but also include
    • Fanuc Robotic Manipulator (LR Mate 200ic)
    • Over $50k in additional Omron automation and safety equipment
    • Omron NJ301 Mac Driver
    • Over 1000 individual electrical and mechanical components that range from Arduinos, resistors, LEDs, ~100 types of sensors, tons of integrated circuits, and huge emergency stop buttons
    • Web, data backup, and powerful computational calculation server

Each large research breakout table is used for a variety of purposes, from large individual projects, to robotic manipulator research, to teaching and group projects.

The projector media system is built not only to teach from but also host (tele-) video presentations and demonstrations.

  • Epson PowerLite Pro G5450WU (Full 1920 x 1200, 4000 lumens)
  • ~6x9 foot Projector Screen
  • Two 8” Hanging Speakers
  • HD Samsung Digital Presenter
  • Crown Amplifier
  • 2 Webcams