Latest Papers

ASME Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics

  • Discrete Cosserat Method for Soft Manipulators Workspace Estimation: An Optimization-Based Approach
    by Walid A, Zheng G, Kruszewski A, et al. on August 11, 2021 at 12:00 am

    AbstractThis article investigates the workspace estimation of soft manipulators. Given a configuration of such a soft robot, with the bounded actuators, the discrete Cosserat method is adopted to deduce the mathematical model of soft manipulators, based on which an optimization-based approach is proposed to estimate the workspace. Implemented to various soft manipulators’ configurations, numerical simulations are provided to highlight the feasibility of the proposed methodology.

  • Design Control and Performance of a Cable-Driving Module With External Encoder and Force Sensor for Cable-Driven Parallel Robots
    by An H, Zhang Y, Yuan H, et al. on August 11, 2021 at 12:00 am

    AbstractCable-driven parallel robots (CDPRs) have the characteristic of easy deployment, which endows CDPRs with flexible workspace, freely configurable degrees-of-freedom (DOFs), and various configurations, greatly expanding their range of applications. Modular design provides excellent convenience and feasibility for deployment, which is a crucial issue of CDPR design. A highly integrated cable-driving module is designed in this paper, which includes the winding bobbin, servo motor, force sensor, external encoder, electromagnetic brake, as well as other devices. Experiments show that the maximum cable length control error is less than 0.16%, and the maximum cable tension control error is less than 8% in the back-and-forward rotation test. Furthermore, a CDPR with eight cables and six DOFs is constructed rapidly using the proposed module, whose dimension is 850 × 850 × 650 mm3. Results show that the robot’s trajectory errors are all less than 4.5 mm, and the root-mean-square-error (RMSE) is 2.1 mm. Besides, the compliance control experiments show that the robot’s tracking error in an impedance control mode is less than 2 mm, and the RMSE is 0.95 mm. Moreover, the dragging force in a teaching mode is less than 2.5 N. The proposed integrated cable-driving module could be helpful for the modular design and deployment of CDPRs.

  • A Modular Method for Mechanical Error Analysis of Planar Linkages Composed of Class II Assur Group Kinematic Chains
    by Hsu K, Chung J. on August 11, 2021 at 12:00 am

    AbstractThis paper presents a modular method for the mechanical error analysis of complex planar linkages. The topology of the linkage under investigation is decomposed into several class II Assur group kinematic chains (AGKCs) combined in a given sequence. Therefore, the mechanical error of the whole linkage can be analyzed by investigating the error propagations of adopted AGKCs in successive order. Because class II AGKCs are first served as modules, the mechanical error equations of these AGKCs in terms of each error in link lengths and joint variables can be pre-formulated and embedded in form of subroutines in any programmable language. Once the AGKCs constituting the linkage topology are identified, the corresponding subroutines are introduced to compute the error propagations in the linkage. Therefore, the presented modular approach can facilitate the analysis by concentrating on the topology decomposition instead of the algebraic derivation. Numerical examples are provided to illustrate the advantage and flexibility of the modular approach.

Development of a Multi-Cable-Driven Continuum Robot Controlled by Parallel Platforms

Abstract

Cable-driven continuum robots exhibit excellent capabilities in the unstructured environment due to their inherent compliance and dexterity. To improve the reliability and load capacity of continuum robots, increasing the number of cables is often used in the control of continuum robots. However, the number of actuators will increase with the cables. To tackle this challenge, this work proposes a method for increasing the number of cables without increasing actuators in a continuum robot through parallel platforms. The parallel platforms are used to control all the cables in the continuum robot and can be separated from the continuum robot to enable the remote drive of a manipulation arm by using the cable-tube structure. The manipulation arm is composed of several independent bending modules in series, which can be configured freely according to the demand of degrees-of-freedom. Further, each bending module is controlled independently by a parallel platform, which can avoid the mutual interference between the cables of one bending module and another one, improve the position accuracy and simplify the control difficulty of the manipulation arm. To evaluate the proposed method, this work develops a prototype of six-cable-driven continuum robot controlled by 3RPS parallel platforms and presents some basic kinematic models to describe its function, and then an experimental work characterizing its performance. Experimental results illustrated the importance of increasing the number of cables, the rationality of kinematic models of the continuum robot, and the feasibility of controlling multiple cables by a parallel platform.
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