I plan to get a BBB for a robotic power shovel/dozer. I want to use the BBB to run OpenCV, but I am really hoping to communicate with an AVR chip to do all of the actual servo/motor controls. I’m worried about the USB ports though, I’m not sure one would be enough. I want to also have a camera mounted on the board for running OpenCV (which takes up the USB port). Basically the the beaglebone will just do all sensor operations and send instructions to the AVR chip to move the robot. Can I do this board to board communication through a USART, or is it usually done in USB?
I apologize if this was posted twice, but I can’t find my original post for the life of me.
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There is no reason you cannot do board to board communication using USART; however, you will want to check the voltage levels. If I recall correctly, the BBB use 3.3 v and is not 5 v tolerant. If your AVR is running at 5 v you will probably want to use a level converter like this one https://www.sparkfun.com/products/8745
If you search around here, you will find several post concerning running a camera and OpenCV on the BBB. To make a long story short, cameras take a lot of bandwidth on the USB as well as cpu time on the BBB. In addition, OpenCV will use a fair amount of cpu. Don’t be discouraged though! Just know you will have to do some experimentation and planning.
Good luck on your robotic creation.