“We recently called on SKA to help us automate a test fixture for a product we are in the process of releasing to the public. Before the ink even had time to dry on the contract, Spencer and his team hit the ground running. They were professional, innovative, accommodating,and communicated well throughout the entire process. We look forward to working with them again!”

— Uriel Eisen, Chief Production Officer, Rorus Inc.

Heavy Unmanned Ground Vehicle

This experimental robot built by SKA utilizes a custom tank-style drivetrain. It can tow or mount 300 lbs of payload and can traverse pavement, snow, mud, dirt, and more. This modular machine can be quickly modified to perform a diverse array of tasks.

To ensure further reliability, SKA’s heavy unmanned ground vehicle is engineered to be resistant to moisture, heat, vibration, and debris. It can operate autonomously, remote controlled, or manned.

The vehicle can drive upside-down with accessories and sensors removed, increasing its probability of mission success in scenarios when top-mounted equipment is not required.

Light Unmanned Ground Vehicle

SKA Light UGV

This experimental robot built by SKA utilizes a tank-style drivetrain. It is economical to manufacture and service, yet rugged enough to drive outdoors.

UGV Underside

Underside cables are protected from debris and entanglement by PET cable sheath. Unlike a permanent harness, this wrap-around style sheath and the connectors hiding beneath it allow for easy field-replacement and reconfiguration of electrical components.

Light UGV Master Disconnect

A red and yellow emergency-stop serves as a master power switch and operator override. This simplifies construction, maintenance, and operation.

SKA utilizes light unmanned ground vehicles to rapidly and inexpensively test and refine new robotic systems in outdoor environments.

Robotic Catamaran

This fully autonomous catamaran was originally deployed to the Gulf of Mexico. It has since been used to take water samples in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. SKA designed and fabricated the boat’s hulls and drive systems. The hull is 10 feet long and it is made from stainless steel, aluminum, fiberglass, and Kevlar. Partially flooded brushless drive systems allow the craft to zip along the water while eliminating the need for seals.

Wifi Communication Module

SKA has designed and built a plug-and-play module to collect and communicate experimental data. The module receives data via serial and communicates it to the cloud. Uploaded data can be converted into email, text message (SMS), or spreadsheet format(s). Originally developed for Rorus Inc. to report test data for water filters, SKA’s WiFi module has broad application potential. This includes:

  • SMS messaging when a sensor reaches a certain threshold.
  • Informing researchers of results via email.
  • Providing spreadsheets of data for later analysis.

SKA’s WiFi communications module catalyzes your research by making collected data super-accessible.

Custom Lighting for SpaceX

“It makes the data center.”

— Anonymous SpaceX Employee

Photo taken by SpaceX investor Steve Jurvetson

We led a six-person team to rapidly design, build and install custom accent lighting for the Terminator-themed SpaceX corporate data center. Different aisles can be remotely set to glow in different colors. The result is a stunning and functional work environment for the SpaceX team.

Underwater Data Collection System

SKA developed and built a complete mechatronic which helps to create 3D maps of oxygen and salt content in water bodies. The system mounts to a robotic boat and raises and lowers an airtight “sensor pod” into the water. The pod logs temperature, depth and dissolved oxygen.

Novel features allow the winch to raise and lower the sensor pod to a set depth at a set speed according to serial commands and prevent knots in cable.

Processes, Mechanisms, & Sub-Systems

Every robotic system is made up of smaller subsystems. This page includes pictures of machines being built and close-ups of some of the sub-systems that SKA has delivered.
Heavy Unmanned Ground Vehicle
SKA Light Unmanned Ground Vehicle
Light Unmanned Ground Vehicle
Robotic Catamaran
Wifi Communication Module
Custom Lighting for SpaceX
Underwater Data Collection System
Processes, Mechanisms & Sub-Systems