This paper presents a mobile robot with reconfigurable origami wheels, called OrigamiBot-II. The origami wheels, based on the twisted tower design, can contract and extend the width and therefore suitable for amphibious locomotion in an unknown, possibly dynamic, environment. The mechanical design focused on achieving locomotion on various types of ground and water surfaces. To establish wireless communication between the robot and a remote base or another robot, radio frequency (RF) based techniques were investigated and tested for both ground and water environments. The locomotion performance of Origamibot-II was evaluated in two ways: simulations using Gazebo integrated with Robot Operating System (ROS) and physical experiments on various types of surfaces. The simulations showed that the robot moves faster with contracted wheels on a smooth surface than with extend wheels, while expanded wheels provides more traction on a rugged terrain, such as asphalt, than contracted wheels. Physical experiments supported the simulation results and further demonstrated the robot’s amphibious locomotion capability by successfully maneuvering on a variety of ground environments and water surfaces.

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