Status Active


  • Ivan Penskiy (ipenskiy[at]umd[dot]edu)

Important documents and useful links


TurtleBot2 (TB2) is an open source robot kit for research and other educational activities. Its components include Kobuki base, Orbbec Astra Pro 3D camera, gyroscope, and Acer netbook.

Software setup

TB2 has it's on board laptop which can be communicated over WiFi network. The laptop has Ubuntu 16.04 installed with ROS Kinetic running.


Engineering Annex building 093, Room 0307.


TB2 must be reserved before using. The reservation is done using the NanoCenter reservation system (see details in the Scheduling page).
You will be able to reserve the equipment personally only after being trained on it.
Please estimate reservation times (they can be changed after the fact) and limit your reservations to a 12 hour maximum to ensure other users also have access to the system.

Video demonstration

The following videos demonstrate capabilities of TB2:

TurtleBot2: Introduction TurtleBot2: Autodocking Demo TurtleBot2: Gazebo Simulation

Note: these are promotional and instructional videos. They are included for demonstrational purposes only. The details of actual operational procedures in RRL can differ!

Important reminders

  • Make sure that the robots do not fall off surfaces.
  • Be generally careful when working with TB2.
  • TB2 runs on Ubuntu 16.04 and ROS Kinetic.

Gaining access to equipment

  • Preparation
  • Scheduling
  • Instruction session

TB2 has several well defined and structured tutorials, consequently RRL expects users to be familiar with TB2 platform specs and capabilities as well as its basics of operation. Specifically, users should have knowledge of the following topics:

  • ROS framework, one should go through the ROS tutorials for basic understanding.
  • ROS packages for running TB2. For instance, these tutorials provides all the steps necessary to get started on TB2 in ROS.
  • Gazebo simulation of TB2, both ROS wiki and "Learn TurtleBot" have tutorials on this.

Once you are confident in the topics from the previous section, email the lab manager (Ivan Penskiy, ipenskiy[at]umd[dot]edu) to schedule the instruction session (30-45 min).

Instruction session:

In the beginning of the session the user will be asked several questions to test the knowledge of TB2 platform and the basics of ROS framework. The user also will have to demonstrate a Gazebo simulation of TB2. The following are the deliverables for the simulation:

  • Spawn TB2 in a map in Gazebo (you can use standard maps from the tutorials).
  • Command TB2 to move in the simulation using keyboard and velocity messages on respective ROS topic.
  • Run Rviz in parallel to Gazebo and show the real-time visualization of the simulation in Rviz.

After confirming knowledge and skills required to operate TB2 platform, the user will be instructed on rules and technical aspects of using TB2 in RRL (network connection, storage, charging, etc).