FIRST Robotics Competition Blog

2022 Approved Devices and Rules Preview

Dec 08, 2021 Written by Kevin O’Connor, FIRST Robotics Competition Senior Robotics Engineer




Edited 12/10/21 to include the REV Robotics HD Hex motor to the "Complete Motor List" and Kauai Labs navX2 MXP to the "Complete MXP List."

Edited 12/20/21 to clarify lack of limits in the "REV Robotics Control System Boards" section.


To help teams prepare for the RAPID REACTSM presented by The Boeing Company season, there are some details about the Robot Rules we thought you should know before Kickoff. These details include approval for the new REV Robotics control system boards, a new legal device, information about some robot rules, and the lists of legal motors, controllers, and MXP boards for this season.

In some sections below, rules have been included in their entirety. In these rules, words in all capital letters are defined terms. You can find the definitions of these words in the glossary of the 2020 FIRST Robotics Competition Game Manual.

REV Robotics Control System Boards

We have completed our testing on the REV Robotics control system boards announced in this blog and can now say that they are approved for the 2022 season. There are no limits on the number of 40-amp breakers permitted with the Power Distribution Hub or channels that may be used on the devices.

CTR Electronics CANivore

The CANivore is a new USB-to-CAN device by CTR Electronics. This device and its software will allow you to add additional CAN Busses to the roboRIO via USB and control supported CTR Electronics devices from your robot project. More information will be available soon on the CTR Electronics product page.

This device may be used to attach supported motor controllers or sensors. Power distribution and pneumatics devices must still be connected to the roboRIO’s built-in CAN bus.

Robot Cost Accounting

For the 2022 season, there will be no total robot cost limit (same as 2021). In order to account for price increases driven by inflation and pandemic related supply crunch, the single device part limit is increased to $600.

Rx. Individual item cost limit. No individual, non-KOP item or software shall have a Fair Market Value (FMV) that exceeds $600 USD. The total cost of COMPONENTS purchased in bulk may exceed $600 USD as long as the cost of an individual COMPONENT does not exceed $600 USD.

Pre-Kickoff Work

In anticipation of a season that looks a bit more normal than 2021, the rules regarding pre-kickoff fabricated items and designs return in approximately the same form as 2020.

Ry. Custom parts, generally from this year only. FABRICATED ITEMS created before Kickoff are not permitted. Exceptions are:

  3. battery assemblies as described in Rxx,​
  4. FABRICATED ITEMS consisting of 1 COTS electrical device (e.g. a motor or motor controller) and attached COMPONENTS associated with any of the following modifications:
    1. wires modified to facilitate connection to a ROBOT (including removal of existing connectors)
    2. connectors and any materials to secure and insulate those connectors (Note: passive PCBs such as those used to adapt motor terminals to connectors are considered connectors)
    3. motor shafts modified and/or gears, pulleys, or sprockets added, and
    4. motors modified with a filtering capacitor as described in the Blue Box below Rxx
  5. COTS items with any of the following modifications:
    1. Non-functional decoration or labeling
    2. Assembly of COTS items per manufacturer specs, unless the result constitutes a MAJOR MECHANISM as defined in Ixx
    3. Work that could be reasonably accomplished in fewer than 30 minutes with the use of handheld tools (e.g. drilling a small number of holes in a COTS part).

Rz. Create new designs and software, unless they’re public. ROBOT software and designs created before Kickoff are only permitted if the source files (complete information sufficient to produce the design) are available publicly prior to Kickoff.

Complete Actuator Controller List

  1. Motor Controllers
    1. DMC 60/DMC 60c Motor Controller (P/N: 410-334-1, 410-334-2)
    2. Jaguar Motor Controller (P/N: MDL-BDC, MDL-BDC24, and 217-3367) connected to PWM only
    3. Nidec Dynamo BLDC Motor with Controller to control integral motor only (P/N 840205-000, am-3740)
    4. SD540 Motor Controller (P/N: SD540x1, SD540x2, SD540x4, SD540Bx1, SD540Bx2, SD540Bx4, SD540C)
    5. Spark Motor Controller (P/N: REV-11-1200)
    6. Spark MAX Motor Controller (P/N: REV-11-2158)
    7. Talon FX Motor Controller (P/N: 217-6515, 19-708850, am-6515, am-6515_Short) for controlling integral Falcon 500 only.
    8. Talon Motor Controller (P/N: CTRE_Talon, CTRE_Talon_SR, and am-2195)
    9. Talon SRX Motor Controller (P/N: 217-8080, am-2854, 14-838288)
    10. Venom Motor with Controller (P/N BDC-10001) for controlling integral motor only​
    11. Victor 884 Motor Controller (P/N: VICTOR-884-12/12)
    12. Victor 888 Motor Controller (P/N: 217-2769)
    13. Victor SP Motor Controller (P/N: 217-9090, am-2855, 14-868380)
    14. Victor SPX Motor Controller (P/N: 217-9191, 17-868388, am-3748)
  2. Relay Modules
    1. Spike H-Bridge Relay (P/N: 217-0220 and SPIKE-RELAY-H)
    2. AutomationDirect Relay (P/N: AD-SSR6M12-DC-200D, AD-SSRM6M25-DC-200D, AD-SSR6M40-DC-200D)
  3. Pneumatics controllers
    1. Pneumatics Control Module (P/N: am-2858, 217-4243, 14-806777)   
    2. Pneumatic Hub (P/N REV-11-1852)

Complete MXP List

The MXP approved board list remains the same as the 2020/21 seasons:

  • Kauai Labs navX MXP
  • Kauai Labs navX2 MXP
  • RCAL MXP Daughterboard
  • REV Robotics RIOduino
  • REV Robotics Digit Board
  • West Coast Products Spartan Sensor Board
  • Huskie Robotics HUSKIE 2.0 Board

Complete Motor List

The approved actuator list remains the same as the 2020/21 seasons:

  • AndyMark 9015 (am-0912)
  • AndyMark NeveRest (am-3104)
  • AndyMark PG (am-2161, am-2765, am-2194, am-2766)
  • AndyMark RedLine Motor (am-3775, am-3775a)
  • AndyMark Snow Blower Motor (am-2235, am-2235a)
  • Banebots (am-3830, M7-RS775-18, RS775WC-8514, M5 – RS550-12, RS550VC-7527, RS550)
  • CIM (FR801-001, M4-R0062-12, AM802-001A, 217-2000, PM25R-44F-1005, PM25R-45F-1004, PM25R-45F-1003, PMR25R-45F-1003, PMR25R-44F-1005, am-0255)
  • CTR Electronics/VEX Robotics Falcon 500 (217-6515, 19-708850, am-6515, am-6515_Short)
  • KOP Automotive Motors (Denso AE235100-0160, Denso 5-163800-RC1, Denso 262100-3030, Denso 262100-3040, Bosch 6 004 RA3 194-06, Johnson Electric JE-PLG-149)
  • Nidec Dynamo BLDC Motor (am-3740, DM3012-1063)
  • Playing With Fusion Venom (BDC-10001)
  • REV Robotics HD Hex motor (REV-41-1291)
  • REV Robotics NEO Brushless (REV-21-1650)
  • REV Robotics NEO 550 (REV-21-1651)
  • VEX BAG (217-3351)
  • VEX Mini CIM (217-3371)
  • West Coast Products RS775 Pro (217-4347)
  • Electrical solenoid actuators, no greater than 1 in. (nominal) stroke and rated electrical input power no greater than 10 watts (W) continuous duty at 12 volts (VDC)
  • Fans, no greater than 120mm (nominal) size and rated electrical input power no greater than 10 watts (W) continuous duty at 12 volts (VDC)
  • Hard drive motors part of a legal COTS computing device
  • Factory installed vibration and autofocus motors resident in COTS computing devices (e.g. rumble motor in a smartphone).
  • PWM COTS servos with a retail cost < $75.
  • Motors integral to a COTS sensor (e.g. LIDAR, scanning sonar, etc.), provided the device is not modified except to facilitate mounting
  • One (1) compressor compliant with Rxx and used to compress air for the ROBOT’S pneumatic system
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This is wonderful, thank you. Can the official text of this change be sure to clarify that a product retains "COTS" origin even if the vendor that provided it loses its VENDOR status? With all the great allowances in parts reuse and waste reduction, tracking whether every particular VENDOR is still active years later is certainly cumbersome (and in no way practical for us as RIs). It would be great if this allowance also continue even if a "COTS" product is donated to another team or sold on the secondary market after a VENDOR is defunct. I understand if it's unsafe to apply this to motors or certain safety-critical electronics.

Hi Siri,

While this blog content is referring to changes that were made in the 2022 manual, I believe the sentence that has been in the manual for a while as part of the COTS definition addresses your point: "Items that are no longer commercially available but are functionally equivalent to the original condition as delivered from the Vendor are considered COTS and may be used."

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