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rosserial_xbee provides a simple way to wirelessly connect custom sensors and actuators to ROS. It creates a point to multi-point network using XBees. Each hardware node uses an XBee and a microcontroller running rosserial to communicate to a network coordinator XBee connected to a ROS computer.


Example network diagram. Each hardware node could be a separate temperature sensor, rfid reader, ultrasounic ranger, clap detector, etc...

Using rosserial_xbee, you can set up a network of sensors around your home to report back to ROS or just use it to wirelessly control a homebrew robot.

There are two main tools provided : setup_xbee.py and xbee_network.


setup_xbee.py is configuration script for Xbees. It takes factory fresh xbee and programs it to work with your rosserial network. If XBee is not factory fresh, use Digi's X-CTU software to program it.

./setup_xbee.py [options] port my_adr

    port :    serial port of port of the xbee (/dev/ttyUSB0)
    my_adr:   MY address is the 16 bit address of this xbee in the
              network. This must be a unique address in the network.
              This address is always 0 for the coordinator.

  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -P PAN_ID, --pan_id=PAN_ID
                        Pan ID of the xbee network.  This ID must be the same
                        for all XBees in your network.
  -c CHANNEL, --channel=CHANNEL
                        Frequency channel for the xbee network. The channel
                        value must be the same for all XBees in your network.
  -C, --coordinator     Configures the XBee as Coordinator for the network.
                        Only make the XBee connected to the computer a


This node connects to the master xbee, takes the rosserial communication from all of the rosserial devices and forwards it to the rest of ROS. It subscribes / publishes any topic requested by its hardware nodes

./xbee_network.py <xbee_serial_port> ID1 [ ID2 ID3 ....]

To run xbee_network.py, supply as arguments to the scrip the xbee's serial port and the ID # of all of the hardware node xbees. These IDs were programed into the xbee using setup_xbee.py or Digi's X-CTU software.

2024-07-13 14:38