Actuators & Sensors. Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu. Department of Electrical & Electronics Engineering Izmir Institute of Technology.

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1 Actuators & Sensors Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu Department of Electrical & Electronics Engineering Izmir Institute of Technology Chapter 2 Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 1 / 23

2 Robot actuators One per independent joint motion Three fundamental technologies: Pneumatic Hydraulic Electric Also: Shape Memory Alloys (SMAs) Dielectric Elastomers Electrostrictive Polymers. Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 2 / 23

3 Pneumatic actuators Compressed air transmitted through flexible tubes to pistons Typically used in parallel jaw grippers Basically on or off Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 3 / 23

4 Pneumatic actuators Advantages: Rapid High power actuation Well understood (as used in practice) Flexible supply lines Supply typically readily available Disadvantages: Typically imprecise due to the compressibility of air Also requires electric power Noisy Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 4 / 23

5 Hydraulic actuators Compressed fluid transmitted through semi flexible tubes to pistons Typically used for high power operations Fluid (usually oil) at high pressure Servo valves (mature technology) used to control (differential) piston pressure Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 5 / 23

6 Servo valves Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 6 / 23

7 Hydraulic actuators Advantages: Smoother operation than pneumatics, electrics High power to weight ratio High speed of operation Disadvantages: Specialized maintenance required Power source is typically large Not scalable to small sizes Noisy Safety (high pressure leaks) Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 7 / 23

8 Electric actuators DC and AC motors Exploitation of electromechanical effects Power transmitted via flexible wires Many different types available (DC, AC, permanent magnet, step,...) Actuator of choice for majority of robots Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 8 / 23

9 Electric actuators Advantages: Readily available over a wide range of scales Relatively inexpensive Power source (electricity) is widely available Relatively easy to control Clean, non polluting Simple to maintain Disadvantages: Typically have high speed and low torque characteristics which requires gearing to make them usable Relatively low power to weight ratio Not suitable for some hostile environments Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 9 / 23

10 Transmission systems Gears: Worm, planetary, harmonic Friction, backlash problems Belts: Slippage problems Chains: Backlash problems Direct drive: Eliminates friction/backlash Hard to control Need high output torques Rarely seen Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 10 / 23

11 Sensing capabilities Most robot arms feature: Rigid links Four, five, or six joints Parallel jaw gripper Joint position sensors only Thus, any widely applicable algorithm can only assume joint position sensing Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 11 / 23

12 Robot sensors Many possibilities (but not necessarily many types in any given robot) Two basic purposes: Internal (proprioceptive) to find out about the robot o Joint position sensors o Joint velocity sensors o Wrist Force/Torque Sensors External (exterioceptive) to find out about the world o Contact external sensors o Non contact external sensors Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 12 / 23

13 Joint position sensors Want to find relative angular/linear position of consecutive link pairs, i.e., how much joint had moved/is moving Typical candidates: potentiometers encoders resolvers Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 13 / 23

14 Potentiometers Resistance varies with change of position (for constant voltage) Linear or rotary Often used for calibration in robot arms Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 14 / 23

15 Optical encoders Most common joint sensor for robot arms Angular position sensors Feature a light source and detector (photoelectric cell), and a segmented disk Disk rotates with joint, and has patterns observed by detector Two types, varying by pattern on disk: Incremental encoders Absolute encoders Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 15 / 23

16 Incremental encoders Disk marked with a star ( spoke ) pattern Detector count each spoke passing by Software keeps track of number and direction of counts Advantage: Simple Disadvantage: Need to calibrate (don t know where you are when you start) Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 16 / 23

17 Absolute encoders Disk has patterns of black or white arcs Shaft position converted directly to a binary number Advantage: No initialization needed Disadvantages: More sophisticated detection needed More expensive than incremental encoders Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 17 / 23

18 Resolvers Alternative for joint position sensing Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 18 / 23

19 Joint velocity sensors Tachometers are used only on a small subset of manipulators Can also obtain joint velocity estimates by differentiating the position signals from encoders (but noise is an issue) Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 19 / 23

20 Wrist force/torque sensors Several commercial packages available Mounted at wrist, infer forces/torques at gripper Based on strain guage technology Very fine electrical conductors carefully bonded to pattern on sensor Resistance changes due to deformations caused by forces torques Estimate applied force/torques from sensor readings Advantage: Can sense 3 or 6 axes Disadvantages: Sensitive to movement Sensitive to temperature variations Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 20 / 23

21 Contact external sensors Contact (single signal): Binary (switches,...) Analog (LED based, piezoelectric...) Contact (array): Strain guages Capacitive Resistive Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 21 / 23

22 Non contact external sensors Vision (cameras): Rapidly improving in performance, cost Provides good detail in images However, computationally expensive, slow Ultrasonics: Most common sensor for mobile robots Well understood, simple, cheap, fast Poor detail, accuracy Lasers, infra red (IR): Fine detail possible Relatively slow Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 22 / 23

23 Computers/electronics Need A/D, D/A boards to interface sensors, actuators to host computer Variety of boards are commercially available In the past, specialized processors and/or architectures were required to run most robot algorithms in real time Now, current PCs can run all algorithms (of this course) in real time Assoc. Prof. Enver Tatlicioglu EE463 Introduction to Robotics Chapter 2 23 / 23

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