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.

Design and Validation of a Nonparasitic 2R1T Parallel Hand-Held Prostate Biopsy Robot With Remote Center of Motion


An increasing number of grounded robots are being used in prostate interventions to improve clinical outcomes, but their large size and high-cost limit their popularity. Thus, we present a hand-held 3-degree-of-freedom (DoF) parallel robot with remote center of motion (RCM) for minimally invasive prostate biopsy applications, combining the flexibility of hand-held devices with the precision of robotic assistance. First, the kinematic structure of robotic assistance is introduced according to its design requirements. Then, the kinematic analysis of robotic assistance is carried out by using a simplified kinematic model. The kinematic parameters are designed according to the desired workspace. A prototype has been developed and validated in animal experiments. Twenty beagles of different sizes were selected for the robot-assisted and controlled experiments, resulting in target errors of 3.30 ± 1.63 mm and 5.40 ± 1.76 mm, respectively. The error of robot-assisted experiments was significantly better than in controlled experiments. Preliminary animal tests have demonstrated that the hand-held robot can improve the accuracy of free-hand biopsy punctures.

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