Monday, November 16, 2009

Building Robot Hands

Building Robot Hands with Compliant Under-Actuated Fingers

Techniques for building compliant robot hands and fingers.

Building capable robot end effectors, particularly high-complexity hands, can be a daunting challenge.  In this article, we will examine the fabrication of a robot hand with compliant, under-actuated fingers that is rugged enough to bounce back from twisting, end-on and side impacts, falls, collisions, and even severe back-bending.  The specific fabrication process explored is akin to shape deposition manufacturing using materials such as resins (epoxy / Delrin) and urethanes (a "rubbery" substance) of various durometer (hardness).  This particular technique was used to build early hand prototypes for MIT's Nexi (or MDS) robot from the Personal Robotics Group, and further refinements resulted in the Meka Robotics H2 Compliant Hands, as seen on the Simon robot.    Read on for details and pictures -- this should be of interest to robotics hobbyists and professionals alike.

Posted via email from Pa^2 Patois

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