Latest Papers

ASME Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics

  • Stable Inverse Dynamics for Feedforward Control of Nonminimum-Phase Underactuated Systems
    on January 25, 2023 at 12:00 am

    AbstractAn enhanced inverse dynamics approach is here presented for feedforward control of underactuated multibody systems, such as mechanisms or robots where the number of independent actuators is smaller than the number of degrees of freedom. The method exploits the concept of partitioning the independent coordinates into actuated and unactuated ones (through a QR-decomposition) and of linearly combined output, to obtain the internal dynamics of the nonminimum-phase system and then to stabilize it through proper output redefinition. Then, the exact algebraic model of the actuated sub-system is inverted, leading to the desired control forces with just minor approximations and no need for pre-actuation. The effectiveness of the proposed approach is assessed by three numerical test cases, by comparing it with some meaningful benchmarks taken from the literature. Finally, experimental verification through an underactuated robotic arm with two degrees of freedom is performed.

Miniature Continuum Manipulator With Three Degrees-of-Freedom Force Sensing for Retinal Microsurgery


Retinal microsurgery requires the precise manipulation of delicate tissue in the interior of the eye. Smart surgical instruments with dexterous tip and force sensing capabilities can permit surgeons to perform more flexible surgical procedures and obtain imperceptible force information, thereby improving the safety and efficiency of microsurgery. In this study, we present an intraocular continuum manipulator with three degrees-of-freedom (DOF) force sensing capabilities. A contact-aided compliant mechanism based on cutting superelastic Nitinol tubes is used to provide high dexterity. It enables two rotational DOFs at the distal end of the manipulator. Fiber Bragg grating (FBG) fibers are used to provide high-resolution force measurements. Moreover, a novel Nitinol flexure was designed to achieve high axial force sensitivity. The experimental results show that the maximum bending angle of the dexterous tip is more than ±45 deg for each DOF with high repeatability. In addition, the experimental results demonstrate that the proposed force sensor can provide sub-millinewton resolution. The manipulator has also been validated with an artificial eye model, demonstrating the potential clinical value of the manipulator for retinal microsurgery.
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