Latest Papers

ASME Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics

  • Mechanical Characterization of Supernumerary Robotic Tails for Human Balance Augmentation
    on August 31, 2023 at 12:00 am

    AbstractHumans are intrinsically unstable in quiet stance from a rigid body system viewpoint; however, they maintain balance, thanks to neuro-muscular sensory control properties. With increasing levels of balance related incidents in industrial and ageing populations globally each year, the development of assistive mechanisms to augment human balance is paramount. This work investigates the mechanical characteristics of kinematically dissimilar one and two degrees-of-freedom (DoF) supernumerary robotic tails for balance augmentation. Through dynamic simulations and manipulability assessments, the importance of variable coupling inertia in creating a sufficient reaction torque is highlighted. It is shown that two-DoF tails with solely revolute joints are best suited to address the balance augmentation issue. Within the two-DoF options, the characteristics of open versus closed loop tails are investigated, with the ultimate design selection requiring trade-offs between environmental workspace, biomechanical factors, and manufacturing ease to be made.

Synthesis of Watt-Type Timed Curve Generators and Selection From Continuous Cognate Spaces


Following recent work on Stephenson-type mechanisms, the synthesis equations of Watt six-bar mechanisms that act as timed curve generators are formulated and systematically solved. Four variations of the problem arise by assigning the actuator and end effector onto different links. The approach produces exact synthesis of mechanisms up to eight precision points. Polynomial systems are formulated and their maximum number of solutions is estimated using the algorithm of random monodromy loops. Certain variations of Watt timed curve generators possess free parameters that do not affect the output motion, indicating a continuous space of cognate mechanisms. Packaging compactness, clearance, and dimensional sensitivity are characterized across the cognate space to illustrate trade-offs and aid in selection of a final mechanism.
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