View Chapter

Chapter 4 — Mechanism and Actuation

Victor Scheinman, J. Michael McCarthy and Jae-Bok Song

This chapter focuses on the principles that guide the design and construction of robotic systems. The kinematics equations and Jacobian of the robot characterize its range of motion and mechanical advantage, and guide the selection of its size and joint arrangement. The tasks a robot is to perform and the associated precision of its movement determine detailed features such as mechanical structure, transmission, and actuator selection. Here we discuss in detail both the mathematical tools and practical considerations that guide the design of mechanisms and actuation for a robot system.

The following sections (Sect. 4.1) discuss characteristics of the mechanisms and actuation that affect the performance of a robot. Sections 4.2–4.6 discuss the basic features of a robot manipulator and their relationship to the mathematical model that is used to characterize its performance. Sections 4.7 and 4.8 focus on the details of the structure and actuation of the robot and how they combine to yield various types of robots. The final Sect. 4.9 relates these design features to various performance metrics.

A parallel robot

Author  Jae-Bok Song

Video ID : 640

Fig. 4.2 A parallel robot can have as many as six serial chains that connect a platform to the base frame.

Three-fingered robot hand

Author  Masatoshi Ishikawa

Video ID : 642

Fig. 4.5 to Fig. 4.7 Three-fingered robot hand moving very fast.

Robotic milking system

Author  Lena Rosenbohm

Video ID : 643

Fig. 4.12 DeLaval Cow Milking System features a hydraulic robot with machine-vision guided positioning.

SCARA robots

Author  Adept Technology Inc

Video ID : 644

Fig. 4.20 The Adept robot uses closed-loop control and variable-reluctance motors.

BigDog - Applications of hydraulic actuators

Author  Boston Dynamics

Video ID : 645

Fig. 4.22a Applications of hydraulic actuators to robot: BigDog (Boston Dynamics).

Raytheon Sarcos exoskeleton

Author  Sarcos

Video ID : 646

Fig. 4.22b Applications of hydraulic actuators to robot: Sarcos exoskeleton (Raytheon).

Shadow Robot Company arm with Hand C5

Author  Shadow Robot Company

Video ID : 647

Fig. 4.23a Applications of pneumatic actuator: robot hand and arm with artificial muscle (Shadow Robot Company).

PI piezo hexapod

Author  Physik Instrumente

Video ID : 648

Fig. 4.26 A six-axis Physik Instrumente (PI) piezo hexapod with sub-nanometer resolution.

Harmonic drive

Author  Harmonic Drive AG

Video ID : 649

Fig. 4.28 The harmonic drive.