RE: [DIYbio] DIY liquid handling robot?

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Sebastian Cocioba

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Aug 1, 2013, 8:44:33 PM8/1/13
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Steppers with micro stepping drivers. Peristaltic pumps. And some misc hardware. Seems simple in essence, just a robotic arm. Keeping things sterile would be interesting. Seems doable. The pipetting accuracy may be a real issue. What if you just strap a 8ch pipette to an arm and add a linear actuator. It can just take from a reservoir. Again, fairly doable but never heard of one actually being made...just a whole lot of talk.

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From: Koeng
Sent: 8/1/2013 8:12 PM
To: diy...@googlegroups.com
Subject: [DIYbio] DIY liquid handling robot?

Does anyone know if one of these exist :D?

-Koeng

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Dakota Hamill

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Aug 1, 2013, 8:55:59 PM8/1/13
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Tons of hardware seems "really simple" when you get down to it.  An incubator is a box that stays at a constant temperature, yet a lab incubator costs thousands of dollars new.  I've also seen 50 posts on DIY Incubators, all of them semi-crude mash together-ed monstrosities.  I've even made one myself, but it's ugly, and it sucks. Why doesn't someone engineer a simple circuit with a heating element, a box, and a temperature controller and sell it for $100 or $200 dollars?  I'd buy it tomorrow when I get payed.

   A liquid handling robot: stepper motors that pull a syringe back and forth, tens of thousands of dollars new.  Plate readers & PCR machines also seem really basic in what parts they actually need to work, but getting a nice finished polished product takes a lot of time, effort, and money.  OpenPCR is a good example I often think of, anyone can say a PCR machine is just an aluminium block, a peltier cooler, a fan, and some control board, but when you actually have to engineer all that it gets complicated and expensive.

I suck at engineering and I wish I was better at it, but that's the journey of life I guess, trying to suck less at things.  

I meant to comment on the Plate Reader post recently because a plate reader would be an AMAZING piece of equipment I desperately need, and if it was good enough I'd easily pay $1,000 for one.

I agree with what Sebastian said..."a whole lot of talk". (Which can be said for more than just one piece of hardware)

So as for now Koeng the best DIY liquid handling robot you can afford is probably yourself, with maybe a 9V battery in your pocket if you want to feel more robot-y

Koeng

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Aug 1, 2013, 10:38:52 PM8/1/13
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Ima go get a battery

Koeng

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Aug 1, 2013, 10:41:11 PM8/1/13
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Brian Degger

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Aug 2, 2013, 6:05:57 AM8/2/13
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the washington one is a start. 
love the video.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Lqp5Ebsu8GQ

 




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John Griessen

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Aug 2, 2013, 4:25:58 PM8/2/13
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On 08/01/2013 09:41 PM, Koeng wrote:
> http://2009.igem.org/Team:Washington-Software

Even their prototype, at $700 US is a little steep to get any signups from this list...
It would have to be productized and cost reduced more and sell at $300 to get much in sales,
and at that price it might be a little toy like fragile, or not easy to keep positional accuracy.

Enough engineering time would get it low enough, but then it might not sell enough to recover
that real value of that time spent. The above academic project is a quickie mashup
not worth copying from the sound of this excerpt:
http://2009.igem.org/Team:Washington-Software/Project "each (Lego Mindstorms) NXT brick can
only be connected to a maximum of 3 motors. We need 6 motors for this project, and use 2 NXT bricks.
We designed and implemented a Master Slave Synchronization System using blue-tooth wireless"

Sounds like something desperate to meet a class deadline.

There's a nice open hardware project called smoothie that uses some inexpensive computer chips
and can have many control outputs and has almost an OS or RTOS for programming motions.
That and a review of their code and jcline's FOSS tecan code would be more of a start.

jarlemag

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Aug 2, 2013, 4:40:20 PM8/2/13
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There's a new Lego Mindstorms kit ("EV3") coming this fall which sees to be quite an improvement over the previous version: http://www.ev-3.net/en/archives/98

-JP

Nathan McCorkle

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Aug 2, 2013, 4:56:39 PM8/2/13
to diybio, Patrik D'haeseleer
Wasn't there some sub $300 CNC at biocurious that was off-the-shelf
(or at least came as a full kit)?
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Avery louie

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Aug 2, 2013, 5:04:31 PM8/2/13
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Patrik D'haeseleer

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Aug 3, 2013, 2:07:54 AM8/3/13
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Nope - we don't have a CNC at BioCurious. But we do have a community project to build a lab robot! Not sure what progress they've made lately, but they built a large extruded aluminum gantry, and were discussing syringe pumps, pipetters, PCR modules, etc.

Patrik

Jordan Miller

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Aug 3, 2013, 9:18:42 AM8/3/13
to diy...@googlegroups.com, Ravi Sheth
Check out Ravi Sheth's CellStruder. it works great (he uses it on an ordbot)!

Ravi is cc'ed above in case you have any questions.

cheers,
jordan


Patrik D'haeseleer

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Aug 4, 2013, 5:05:42 AM8/4/13
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Nice! Our DIY syringe pump for the bioprinter is even simpler, using a $10 linear stepper motor. Got to do some more testing on it though.

Patrik

Brian Degger

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Aug 4, 2013, 10:27:12 AM8/4/13
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Patrik,
Any model number?

Avery louie

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Aug 4, 2013, 10:52:16 AM8/4/13
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aww...now I want a robot.


Patrik D'haeseleer

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Aug 5, 2013, 2:05:27 AM8/5/13
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We're using this linear stepper motor: http://www.mpja.com/Stepper-Motor-Linear-5V/productinfo/17284%20MS/

It's quite low power, which may wind up being a problem if we want to squeeze fairly viscous gels through a tiny nozzle. But so far that's not been a problem.

The syringe we're using is a very thin 1ml disposable Eppendorf, which gives us a resolution of 0.5 ul per full step on the stepper motor. That kind of resolution is probably overkill, compared to the limitations imposed by surface tension on what kind of volumes you can realistically work with.

Patrik

Dieter

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Aug 11, 2013, 11:14:40 PM8/11/13
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I wouldn't say we're making rapid progress, but we're coming along. We could probably use a brainstorming session to see if we're going in the right direction.

Tom Eberhard

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Aug 15, 2013, 5:08:42 PM8/15/13
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Hi Everyone, 

I've been reading / lurking for a while while working on a liquid handling robot. I hope to have a working / sellable beta version by end of September.
For now it looks like a 3D printer (see pic), and I'm working on the pipetting capabilities. Work space is about 30cm by 20cm, and ~5cm in Z axis. 

Could use some input from the community on what capabilities you'd like. Feel free to email me directly. 

Tom.
LiquidHandler-01.jpg

Koeng

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Aug 19, 2013, 2:31:19 PM8/19/13
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Wow that looks great... biggest question for me is what will be the price range?

BioBot

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Aug 24, 2013, 4:53:38 PM8/24/13
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hi,
we have a prototype - BioBot that's open platform too. It's 25cmx25cmx150cm working space - expandable to 250cm with longer rail.
the pipetting is done with your pipettor so it can use any tips. 
Price range is $2000.
Thanks
Chiu

BioBot

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Oct 17, 2013, 5:03:15 PM10/17/13
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here's the robot :

any pipettor - open platform.

Mac Cowell

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Oct 17, 2013, 5:16:42 PM10/17/13
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BioBot

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Oct 17, 2013, 8:05:22 PM10/17/13
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Cute - 
we can integrate your pipettor in our system.
can it control by Android?
Thanks
RoboGuy

BioBot

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Oct 20, 2013, 10:01:16 PM10/20/13
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here's the latest :
the robot is simple and flexible.

BioBot

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Oct 23, 2013, 11:23:51 AM10/23/13
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Check out the latest : OpenTrons.com

Cornelia

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Oct 26, 2013, 2:03:48 AM10/26/13
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This looks great!

Is this meant to be a single channel LiHa? I realize its a bit late now.But capabilities are really up to you. I think there is definitely a need for different orders of magnitude in volume. I don't think there is a good way to combine all in one. 
Did you already decide on the specifics by now and have a sellable beta?

Would love to hear more!

Cornelia


On Thursday, August 15, 2013 2:08:42 PM UTC-7, Tom Eberhard wrote:

Chiu Chau

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Oct 26, 2013, 11:57:25 AM10/26/13
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hi Cornelia,
Thank you - the robot is really flexbile - 
we just did a 8 channel pipettor on it : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfgzI2NOedg
The volume range would  be up to user to put in pipettor - we have done : low (10ul) to 2 ml so far with very good result - no problem.
it capable to put more than one arm if needed.
The spec would be a range of pipettor that fit into deck.
do you have anything in mind that you can suggest?
Thanks
Robo



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BioBot

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Nov 19, 2013, 11:48:03 AM11/19/13
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hi,
Thanks for all the input - Opentron have more add on :
Check out our latest : Rotating Grabber - 
See us at SLAS
Thanks
Robo 




On Thursday, August 1, 2013 8:44:33 PM UTC-4, Sebastian wrote:
Steppers with micro stepping drivers. Peristaltic pumps. And some misc hardware. Seems simple in essence, just a robotic arm. Keeping things sterile would be interesting. Seems doable. The pipetting accuracy may be a real issue. What if you just strap a 8ch pipette to an arm and add a linear actuator. It can just take from a reservoir. Again, fairly doable but never heard of one actually being made...just a whole lot of talk.

Sent from my Windows Phone

From: Koeng
Sent: 8/1/2013 8:12 PM
To: diy...@googlegroups.com
Subject: [DIYbio] DIY liquid handling robot?

Does anyone know if one of these exist :D?

-Koeng

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Tom Eberhard

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Aug 21, 2014, 2:31:18 AM8/21/14
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If anyone's curious, I'm still at it. Everything is easy and doable, until you try it out and come across all the problems that were not anticipated.
Pic of the latest build. 
What would you do with it? 

Tom. 
LiquidHandler-Eberhard.jpg

David Murphy

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Aug 21, 2014, 3:15:03 AM8/21/14
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"I've even made one myself, but it's ugly, and it sucks. Why doesn't someone engineer a simple circuit with a heating element, a box, and a temperature controller and sell it for $100 or $200 dollars?  I'd buy it tomorrow when I get payed. "

I'm curious: what features does this http://www.amazon.co.uk/Exo-Terra-PT2499-Incubator-Unit/dp/B004AJLREA/ lack that you'd need? (digitally controlled, temperature range: 2 to 60 degrees Celsius to within 2 degrees)


On Fri, Aug 2, 2013 at 1:55 AM, Dakota Hamill <dko...@gmail.com> wrote:
Tons of hardware seems "really simple" when you get down to it.  An incubator is a box that stays at a constant temperature, yet a lab incubator costs thousands of dollars new.  I've also seen 50 posts on DIY Incubators, all of them semi-crude mash together-ed monstrosities.  I've even made one myself, but it's ugly, and it sucks. Why doesn't someone engineer a simple circuit with a heating element, a box, and a temperature controller and sell it for $100 or $200 dollars?  I'd buy it tomorrow when I get payed.

   A liquid handling robot: stepper motors that pull a syringe back and forth, tens of thousands of dollars new.  Plate readers & PCR machines also seem really basic in what parts they actually need to work, but getting a nice finished polished product takes a lot of time, effort, and money.  OpenPCR is a good example I often think of, anyone can say a PCR machine is just an aluminium block, a peltier cooler, a fan, and some control board, but when you actually have to engineer all that it gets complicated and expensive.

I suck at engineering and I wish I was better at it, but that's the journey of life I guess, trying to suck less at things.  

I meant to comment on the Plate Reader post recently because a plate reader would be an AMAZING piece of equipment I desperately need, and if it was good enough I'd easily pay $1,000 for one.

I agree with what Sebastian said..."a whole lot of talk". (Which can be said for more than just one piece of hardware)

So as for now Koeng the best DIY liquid handling robot you can afford is probably yourself, with maybe a 9V battery in your pocket if you want to feel more robot-y

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John Griessen

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Aug 21, 2014, 11:30:11 AM8/21/14
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On 08/21/2014 01:31 AM, Tom Eberhard wrote:
> Pic of the latest build.
> What would you do with it?

A stiff gantry in a cube of reusable beams? Oh, almost anything, except with what software?

The frame looks a little too strong and too expensive for light duty liquid handling.
I envision liquid handling by the gantry "hand" to be just tens of milliliters
moving at a time. If you want to move 1 liter beakers a side conveyor would be the thing.

The cubespawn project is a lone guy working on similar frameworks and
he's percolating along to the motor control level about now -- you'd
maybe benefit talking with him. I help him with design review and idea generating some.

ROS and smoothie are the code bases he is planning on working from, how about you?

Will Canine

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Aug 22, 2014, 3:02:03 AM8/22/14
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Hi Tom and everyone! 

Hooray for DIY liquid handling robots!

We have been working on our DIY open-source liquid handling robot for over six months now, and released the first version in July. We have all the documentation on how to build and run the DIY BioBot on our Synbiota page -- everything is off-the-shelf or 3D printed, so you can easily make one yourself!

The first version of our software is available on our github as well. It runs on the TinyG micro controller and an Android device, and hopefully it lets you you quickly/easily make an automation routine and get to liquid handling. 

Right now we are at Haxlr8r in Shenzhen working on building the next, plug-and-play version of the robot. We are going to launch our crowd-funding in November with robots starting at $2000USD and an anticipated early-bird delivery of April 2015 (10% of the profits from our Kickstarter will go to Genspace, our home biomakerspace). Things are going really well here, we are working with Seeed Studio to do manufacturing, and are well on the way to a complete production prototype and manufacturing plan. We will have a pretty video sneak-peak to show in a week or so -- I will put it up here where its ready for sure! :) 

We are making this version of the robot fully programmable also, meaning you can write code to do biology protocols. We're launching a web-hub for people to co-develop and share creative commons automation protocols -- I am excited to start sharing experiments with you guys!

Would love to hear more about what you're hoping to automate. Most of the folks using our robot right now are using it for repetitive assay preparations, and we've used it to do some bead-wash-repeat type protocols at Genspace as well. We are hoping that with our next software version it will be easier to do more complicated things though.  

We are focusing on a rapid prototyping platform for biotech, saving you time to problem-solve, not pipette. High-throughput is nice too, and our bot can hold two 12-channel pipettes at the same time with a 12 SPE bed, so it can do a lot of work, but we want a more dynamic machine that is quick to set-up and run. 

Anyways, what protocols are you guys hoping to automate? Would love to work with you to develop it as a test for our machine. 

Thanks!

Will 
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