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Proceedings Paper

Conformal grasping using feedback controlled bubble actuator array
Author(s): Wei Carrigan; Richard Stein; Manoj Mittal; Muthu B. J. Wijesundara
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Paper Abstract

This paper presents an implementation of a bubble actuator array (BAA) based active robotic skin, a modular system, onto existing low cost robotic end-effectors or prosthetic hands for conformal grasping of objects. The active skin is comprised of pneumatically controlled polyurethane rubber bubbles with overlaid sensors for feedback control. Sensor feedback allows the BAA based robotic skin to conformally grasp an object with an explicit uniform force distribution. The bubble actuator array reported here is capable of applying up to 4N of force at each point of contact and tested for conformally grasping objects with a radius of curvature up to 57.15mm. Once integrated onto a two-finger gripper with one degree of freedom (DOF), the active skin was shown to reduce point of contact forces of up to 50% for grasped objects.

Paper Details

Date Published: 4 June 2014
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 9116, Next-Generation Robots and Systems, 911607 (4 June 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2058253
Show Author Affiliations
Wei Carrigan, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)
Richard Stein, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)
Manoj Mittal, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)
Muthu B. J. Wijesundara, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9116:
Next-Generation Robots and Systems
Dan O. Popa; Muthu B. J. Wijesundara, Editor(s)

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