Large, High Torque Swerve Drives

Hello all,

I wanted to try my hand at designing a swerve drive as a summer CAD/research project, but wanted to do something a little different. Does anyone have any experience with large, high torque swerve drive trains or know of any practical applications of ones that I could look to? Something the scale of, say, a golf cart?

What might be the some of the challenges with scaling up an FRC-style, CIM-powered swerve drive to something much larger and with more powerful motors?


The only large, real world application I’ve seen for swerve is this car.

There was a cart at CMP that appeared to have a swerve-like holonomic drivetrain. It was parked near the Einstein fields during awards and finals. Not sure where to find more info on that though.

One of my life goals is to build a swerve car and beat my friends in an autocross with it. I know that if I can plot a series of points, I can get the car to drive a course autonomously, much faster than any driver.

Some people might say “Why?” but there’s no talking me down.:smiley:

This unit has something similar to a swerve, although it’s hydraulically driven because the rest of the mower utilizes hydraulic systems.

Search for “industrial automatic guided vehicles”. These are becoming rather common in manufacturing plants. There are many different types and several use swerve. Some are very high torque as well.

Don’t forget about it’s predecessor:

I believe the cart you are referring to is the MRV (Modular Robotic Vehicle), designed by engineers at NASA-JSC. There was a static display of MRV, and it was used to drop off Charles Bolden at the stage post-Einstein.

Here’s a video of MRV:

Yes, that’s it! Thanks for posting this! Definitely an amazing machine.

P.S. Do you know where I can buy one of those? :smiley:

Thanks for the replies everyone. That NASA MRV is seriously amazing.

The NASA/JPL ATHLETE rover comes to mind.

Wow, that car would make Bomb Squad proud. I’m surprised this not much more common than it is.