OutdoorNav – Frequently Asked Questions

What is OutdoorNav?

OutdoorNav is an off-the-shelf autonomous navigation stack for unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs). It provides navigation and tele-operation of UGVs and can be controlled through a graphical user interface (GUI) or application programming interface (API). Localization is based on GPS positioning fused with wheel odometry, LiDAR odometry and IMU data. The software controls UGV along paths to waypoints as part of missions. OutdoorNav enables users to build robotic applications and solutions faster, with a lower technical barrier to entry.

What vehicles are compatible with OutdoorNav software?

Clearpath outdoor UGVs including Warthog, Husky and Jackal are compatible with OutdoorNav out of the box. OutdoorNav can also be used on other ground vehicles meeting certain sensor and interface requirements. Some initial setup, configuration and tuning is often required to use OutdoorNav on a new platform.

Will OutdoorNav work on my vehicle?

OutdoorNav is compatible if your vehicle meets the OutdoorNav interface requirements, which include a ROS interface and Drive-by-wire velocity control.

Currently the software supports differential drive, skid steer and Ackerman drive vehicles. Other drive train kinematics will be compatible in the future and Clearpath may be able to make your configuration work on request.

What kind of hardware does a vehicle need to use OutdoorNav?

Clearpath provides kits of sensors and hardware which are compatible with OutdoorNav; the Standard Sensor Kit, the Basic Sensor Kit and the Clearpath OutdoorNav Backpack. These consist of GPS, IMU and LiDAR sensors as well as a PC to run the software.

Explore Hardware Kits

Other sensor compatibility will be added in the future and client specific sensor configurations can be supported on a case-by-case basis.

What if my vehicle is still being built or retrofitted?

Contact us and see our documentation to ensure your vehicle will be compatible with OutdoorNav software. Our team can provide guidance on building a system that will be ready to work with our navigation software suites.

Is OutdoorNav compatible with the sensors I'm using?

Please check our website for our existing supported sensor and hardware kits. Additional sensors can be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and many affect performance of the software. Contact our team to discuss compatibility of your sensor suite.

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Can I connect OutdoorNav to other software like a fleet manager or custom app?

Yes, but it is going to require your development team. Our clients typically implement their own mission specific software and this could be connecting it with their own fleet manager or a third party fleet manager. Clearpath works closely with Formant.io which provides remote operation, telemetry and fleet management.

Can I begin development with OutdoorNav in simulation?

The Clearpath OutdoorNav development simulator will be available in January 2023.

Simulation is a great way to begin development on your solution but in our experience it will never completely port to the real world. You should expect some additional development, tuning and commissioning to bring your application out into the field.

Does OutdoorNav have an Application Programming Interface (API)?

Yes. This is how we expect most of our clients to interact with the software as they build out larger solutions and applications. Please see our documentation.

OutdoorNav Software User Manual

 

What does OutdoorNav do out of the box?

OutdoorNav will navigate your robot along paths to waypoints. It will provide feedback and control through the GUI and API. It can also provide teleoperation control of the vehicle. There are some basic utilities for viewing and recording pan-tilt-zoom camera data. Users will develop more advanced applications by implementing their own application software functionality alongside OutdoorNav.

What is the best way to get started with OutdoorNav?

Contact our team about getting robot hardware, sensor kits and an OutdoorNav license. Users can often begin working with our development simulator which is available on request.

Users can use the GUI to begin building and executing basic missions. To begin building your robot solution, users can use example code to implement mission management.

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