11 July 2002 Hyper-redundant robot manipulators actuated by optimized binary-dielectric polymers
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Abstract
This paper reports on the development of a lightweight hyper-redundant manipulator driven by embedded dielectric polymer actuators. This manipulator uses binary actuation and belongs to a class of digital mechanisms that are able to perform precise discrete motions without the need for sensing and feedback control. The system is built from an assembly of modular parallel stages and has potential to be miniaturized for applications ranging from biomedical devices to space system components. The polymer actuators can make such devices feasible. This paper presents the design of a modular polymer actuator that can work under both tension and compression. The actuators achieve improved performance by incorporating an elastic passive element to maintain uniform force-displacement characteristic and bi-stable action. A flexible frame also insures nearly optimal pre-strain required by dielectric film based actuators.
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Andreas Wingert, Matthew D. Lichter, Steven Dubowsky, Moustapha Hafez, "Hyper-redundant robot manipulators actuated by optimized binary-dielectric polymers", Proc. SPIE 4695, Smart Structures and Materials 2002: Electroactive Polymer Actuators and Devices (EAPAD), (11 July 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.475189; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.475189
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