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Proceedings Paper

Integrating a complex electronic system in a small-scale autonomous instrumented robot: the NanoWalker project
Author(s): Sylvain M. Martel; Kevin Doyle; Gerardo Martinez; Ian Warwick Hunter; Serge Lafontaine
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Paper Abstract

The NanoWalker project is an attempt to explore a new approach in the development of various instruments. The idea is to build a small autonomous robot capable of nanometer range motions that will provide a standard platform for new miniaturized embedded instruments. This modular approach will allow easy expansion in instrumentation capability through the use of an arbitrary number of NanoWalkers which would perform similar or different measurement simultaneously on various samples. To do so, a fair amount of electronics must be embedded for infrared wireless communication, processing, support for the embedded instrument, and accurate control and drive capability for the piezo-actuated motion system. Miniaturization of the whole assembly is also a key characteristic to allow more robots to operate simultaneously within smaller surface areas. As such, new assembly techniques applicable to small volume production must be used to achieve the smallest possible implementation. The integration phase within the technological constraints is complicated by the fact that several factors such as the weight and weight distribution of the electronic assembly will have a direct impact on the very sensitive motion behavior of the robot. The NanoWalker is briefly described with the integration phases and the requirements that must be met by the assembly process.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 August 1999
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 3834, Microrobotics and Microassembly, (18 August 1999); doi: 10.1117/12.357810
Show Author Affiliations
Sylvain M. Martel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Kevin Doyle, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Gerardo Martinez, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Ian Warwick Hunter, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)
Serge Lafontaine, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3834:
Microrobotics and Microassembly
Bradley J. Nelson; Jean-Marc Breguet, Editor(s)

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