[FRC Blog] 2022 Approved Devices and Rules Preview

Posted on the FRC Blog, 12/08/2021: https://www.firstinspires.org/robotics/frc/blog/2021-2022-approved-devices-and-rules-preview

2022 Approved Devices and Rules Preview

2021 DEC 08 | Written by Kevin O’Connor, FIRST Robotics Competition Senior Robotics Engineer

To help teams prepare for the RAPID REACTSM presented by The Boeing Company season, there are some details about the Robot Rules we thought you should know before Kickoff. These details include approval for the new REV Robotics control system boards, a new legal device, information about some robot rules, and the lists of legal motors, controllers, and MXP boards for this season.

In some sections below, rules have been included in their entirety. In these rules, words in all capital letters are defined terms. You can find the definitions of these words in the glossary of the 2020 FIRST Robotics Competition Game Manual.

REV Robotics Control System Boards

We have completed our testing on the REV Robotics control system boards announced in this blog and can now say that they are approved for the 2022 season.

CTR Electronics CANivore

The CANivore is a new USB-to-CAN device by CTR Electronics. This device and its software will allow you to add additional CAN Busses to the roboRIO via USB and control supported CTR Electronics devices from your robot project. More information will be available soon on the CTR Electronics product page.

This device may be used to attach supported motor controllers or sensors. Power distribution and pneumatics devices must still be connected to the roboRIO’s built-in CAN bus.

Robot Cost Accounting

For the 2022 season, there will be no total robot cost limit (same as 2021). In order to account for price increases driven by inflation and pandemic related supply crunch, the single device part limit is increased to $600.

Rx. Individual item cost limit. No individual, non-KOP item or software shall have a Fair Market Value (FMV) that exceeds $600 USD. The total cost of COMPONENTS purchased in bulk may exceed $600 USD as long as the cost of an individual COMPONENT does not exceed $600 USD.

Pre-Kickoff Work

In anticipation of a season that looks a bit more normal than 2021, the rules regarding pre-kickoff fabricated items and designs return in approximately the same form as 2020.

Ry. Custom parts, generally from this year only. FABRICATED ITEMS created before Kickoff are not permitted. Exceptions are:

C. battery assemblies as described in Rxx,​
D. FABRICATED ITEMS consisting of 1 COTS electrical device (e.g. a motor or motor controller) and attached COMPONENTS associated with any of the following modifications:

  1. wires modified to facilitate connection to a ROBOT (including removal of existing connectors)
  2. connectors and any materials to secure and insulate those connectors (Note: passive PCBs such as those used to adapt motor terminals to connectors are considered connectors)
  3. motor shafts modified and/or gears, pulleys, or sprockets added, and
  4. motors modified with a filtering capacitor as described in the Blue Box below Rxx
    E. COTS items with any of the following modifications:
  5. Non-functional decoration or labeling
  6. Assembly of COTS items per manufacturer specs, unless the result constitutes a MAJOR MECHANISM as defined in Ixx
  7. Work that could be reasonably accomplished in fewer than 30 minutes with the use of handheld tools (e.g. drilling a small number of holes in a COTS part).

Rz. Create new designs and software, unless they’re public. ROBOT software and designs created before Kickoff are only permitted if the source files (complete information sufficient to produce the design) are available publicly prior to Kickoff.

Complete Actuator Controller List

A. Motor Controllers

  1. DMC 60/DMC 60c Motor Controller (P/N: 410-334-1, 410-334-2)
  2. Jaguar Motor Controller (P/N: MDL-BDC, MDL-BDC24, and 217-3367) connected to PWM only
  3. Nidec Dynamo BLDC Motor with Controller to control integral motor only (P/N 840205-000, am-3740)
  4. SD540 Motor Controller (P/N: SD540x1, SD540x2, SD540x4, SD540Bx1, SD540Bx2, SD540Bx4, SD540C)
  5. Spark Motor Controller (P/N: REV-11-1200)
  6. Spark MAX Motor Controller (P/N: REV-11-2158)
  7. Talon FX Motor Controller (P/N: 217-6515, 19-708850, am-6515, am-6515_Short) for controlling integral Falcon 500 only.
  8. Talon Motor Controller (P/N: CTRE_Talon, CTRE_Talon_SR, and am-2195)
  9. Talon SRX Motor Controller (P/N: 217-8080, am-2854, 14-838288)
  10. Venom Motor with Controller (P/N BDC-10001) for controlling integral motor only​
  11. Victor 884 Motor Controller (P/N: VICTOR-884-12/12)
  12. Victor 888 Motor Controller (P/N: 217-2769)
  13. Victor SP Motor Controller (P/N: 217-9090, am-2855, 14-868380)
  14. Victor SPX Motor Controller (P/N: 217-9191, 17-868388, am-3748)

B. Relay Modules

  1. Spike H-Bridge Relay (P/N: 217-0220 and SPIKE-RELAY-H)
  2. AutomationDirect Relay (P/N: AD-SSR6M12-DC-200D, AD-SSRM6M25-DC-200D, AD-SSR6M40-DC-200D)

C. Pneumatics controllers

  1. Pneumatics Control Module (P/N: am-2858, 217-4243, 14-806777)
  2. Pneumatic Hub (P/N REV-11-1852)

Complete MXP List

The MXP approved board list remains the same as the 2020/21 seasons:

  • Kauai Labs navX MXP
  • RCAL MXP Daughterboard
  • REV Robotics RIOduino
  • REV Robotics Digit Board
  • West Coast Products Spartan Sensor Board
  • Huskie Robotics HUSKIE 2.0 Board

Complete Motor List

The approved actuator list remains the same as the 2020/21 seasons:

  • AndyMark 9015 (am-0912)
  • AndyMark NeveRest (am-3104)
  • AndyMark PG (am-2161, am-2765, am-2194, am-2766)
  • AndyMark RedLine Motor (am-3775, am-3775a)
  • AndyMark Snow Blower Motor (am-2235, am-2235a)
  • Banebots (am-3830, M7-RS775-18, RS775WC-8514, M5 – RS550-12, RS550VC-7527, RS550)
  • CIM (FR801-001, M4-R0062-12, AM802-001A, 217-2000, PM25R-44F-1005, PM25R-45F-1004, PM25R-45F-1003, PMR25R-45F-1003, PMR25R-44F-1005, am-0255)
  • CTR Electronics/VEX Robotics Falcon 500 (217-6515, 19-708850, am-6515, am-6515_Short)
  • KOP Automotive Motors (Denso AE235100-0160, Denso 5-163800-RC1, Denso 262100-3030, Denso 262100-3040, Bosch 6 004 RA3 194-06, Johnson Electric JE-PLG-149)
  • Nidec Dynamo BLDC Motor (am-3740, DM3012-1063)
  • Playing With Fusion Venom (BDC-10001)
  • REV Robotics NEO Brushless (REV-21-1650)
  • REV Robotics NEO 550 (REV-21-1651)
  • VEX BAG (217-3351)
  • VEX Mini CIM (217-3371)
  • West Coast Products RS775 Pro (217-4347)
  • Electrical solenoid actuators, no greater than 1 in. (nominal) stroke and rated electrical input power no greater than 10 watts (W) continuous duty at 12 volts (VDC)
  • Fans, no greater than 120mm (nominal) size and rated electrical input power no greater than 10 watts (W) continuous duty at 12 volts (VDC)
  • Hard drive motors part of a legal COTS computing device
  • Factory installed vibration and autofocus motors resident in COTS computing devices (e.g. rumble motor in a smartphone).
  • PWM COTS servos with a retail cost < $75.
  • Motors integral to a COTS sensor (e.g. LIDAR, scanning sonar, etc.), provided the device is not modified except to facilitate mounting
  • One (1) compressor compliant with Rxx and used to compress air for the ROBOT’S pneumatic system

Thank Dog we can still use those Nidecs.


This is by far the biggest deal in the blog post. Being able to divide the robot into multiple CAN branches adds redundancy, helps raise the maximum CAN bandwidth, and makes placing CAN motor controllers on extended parts of the robot much less dangerous. I’m looking forward to seeing more details about this new device.


Interesting to find that the new navX2 (which was available in FIRST Choice) is not listed in the approved MXP board list. Hopefully we’ll see a correction or clarification.

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Disappointed to see little to no changes on pre-fabricated items, and especially what appears to be a direct shot at pre-fabricated COTS mechanisms. CANivore looks really nice though, and should hopefully put to rest fears of CTRE dropping out of the FRC electronics space in the wake of the new control system.

NavX boards expose some of the PWM outputs available through the MXP.


Whoops, I found the micro before the larger one

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Presumably all of the details will be in a manual eventually, but does anyone know if the CANivore will permit communication with non-CTRE devices? It’d require some updates to all of the vendor APIs, but if the CANivore presents as a socketCAN device or something, you could just pass the name of the interface as a parameter to device constructors…


Nav ex are in first choice so they are by definition legal.

The PWMs are pass through

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Also very interested in this, for other reasons. I am trying to learn how to program a CAN device and it would be nice if we could put/view generic CAN arb IDs (to track behavior of things like the Talon and SMAX from my desktop).

For viewing CAN traffic, you can try this: https://github.com/carlosgj/FRC-CAN-Wireshark

I’ve basically abandoned it for lack of time, but it should correctly decode the IDs.

Python also has a nice CAN package, with send and receive capabilities.


I was hoping not to spend that much but it seems like an inevitability…

Ah neat, the post was updated to fix this, and a couple other things.

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"Edited 12/10/21 to include the REV Robotics HD Hex motor to the “Complete Motor List” and Kauai Labs navX2 MXP to the “Complete MXP List.”

Edited 12/20/21 to clarify lack of limits in the “REV Robotics Control System Boards” section."

“There are no limits on the number of 40-amp breakers permitted with the Power Distribution Hub or channels that may be used on the devices.”

Unlimited 40A circuits on the REV PDH is confirmed.


Use/implement at your own risk :joy:



As mentioned in other topics, expect the most common successful use of this to be enabling [especially upper-middle to middle-upper] teams who [over]filled the PDP to replace multipurpose mechanisms that do different things at different parts of the match with separate mechanisms. For example, teams that filled up the PDP with drive train and game piece manipulators were often pushed into having their climber operate as a PTO from the drive train. Now, they could do a separate mechanism because they aren’t using their drivetrain (much) in the endgame climb.
Now that limiting current to each circuit is pretty easy to do, the next big step in power management may be to manage the current budget ACROSS the systems in a priority-based fashion - and those priorities may have to change as the match progresses.

It may also allow teams with more modest [money] budgets throw two CIMs they already have at a problem where another team would spend the money on a Falcon. (Again, not with a full-time system!)


Absolutely! For teams that understand they need to manage their power draw, this is gonna be fantastic! For those less experienced though… This could cause for some mighty frustrating matches in their future.

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Teams already get into trouble with triple falcon tank drives and inflatable wheels giving too much traction. regardless of how easy the code is to implement… Doesn’t mean they’ve implemented it. I don’t expect this to get much worse than it already is.




I agree, and I would almost argue it may slightly be improved.

We foolishly geared our robot too agressively in 2017, and with 3 CIM motors could blow our main breaker making us dead on the field (we didn’t learn this was possible until we were at comp). We solved this problem on our first comp by putting some of those CIMs on smaller breakers.

That require some rewiring when we did it. With the new PDP, it is as easy as swapping out the breakers to smaller ones. I think that is something that is easy to help a team do if they ever run into a similar situation as us.

Of course a better solution is to do current limiting in software, but back then we didn’t know how to do that (we have come a a long way).