Robotics Research Lab


The RRLab uses various simulation engines such as SimVis3D, Ogre-PhysX, V-REP, and the Unreal Engine to test its robots, software, and methodologies.

Example videos for the simulations can be found under:




SimVis3D (used 2006-2016) is a 3D simulation software for the robot framework Finroc. It bases on Open-Inventor and the Newton physics engine. A simulation scene integrates arbitrary 3D models imported via an XML file and transferred to a scene graph. The software used to simulate various robots as robots RAVON, MARVIN, ARTOS, THOR, or BIPED.


The Ogre-PhysX (used 2013-2016) simulation is a successor of SimVis3D. It bases on the graphics framework OGRE 3D and NVIDIA PhysX and offers advanced performance and improved graphics. It carried out autonomous rescue and reconnaissance missions. In addition, large open worlds enabled autonomous rides over long distances and a simulation of farming processes. The simulation implemented the robots GatorX855D, SUGV, and LUGV.


The Virtual Robot Experimentation Platform (V-REP, used 2015-2018) is a simulation engine of Coppelia Robotics that supports C/C++, Python, Lua, Octave, Urbi, and Matlab. V-REP interacts with the Finroc Framework through the C++ interface using a plugin or remote API. V-REP simulated the GatorX855D, Unimog U5023, Backhoe, and CARL. In addition to sensors such as 2D and 3D lasers, GNSS and IMU, characteristic sensor disturbances and effects are available. Thus, for determining GNSS signals, real-world satellite data determines realistic noise through computing shadowing effects.

Unreal Engine 4

The Unreal Engine 4 (UE 4, used 2017-today) is a professional game engine developed by Epic Games. Unreal offers photorealistic rendering, VR connectivity, open-world design, blueprint scripting, and full C++ source access. Finroc provides a plugin to control and interact with robots in a complex, open, photorealistic world. The detailed simulation of sensor technology includes typical camera-fades, -noise, or -blurring, which have a vast influence on the controller in natural systems. Unreal simulates the tandem rollers BW154 and BW147, where several kilometers of the federal highway B10 exist virtually. Likewise, the robots GatorX855D, Unimog U5023, Backhoe, and recent robots run within the simulation engine.

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