Title: The design of a tendon-sheath-driven robot

Authors: Tian Fuxiang, Wang Xingsong

Addresses: Department of Mechanical Engineering, Southeast University, Nanjing, China. ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, Southeast University, Nanjing, China

Abstract: In some cases, tendon-sheath transmission systems were used to transmit power into work places through complex paths, such as the small narrow crevices possibly existed in the ruins of disasters or complex pipelines. Thus, the tendon-sheath systems might work in arbitrarily curved shape. Based on the results in constant curvature, the transmission characteristics of tendon-sheath in arbitrarily curved shape were investigated in this paper. It was showed that the transmission characteristics were independent of the tendon torsion. By considering static balance of a differential tendon element with Coulomb friction, the transmission characteristics were formulated in terms of total curvature and friction coefficient. The experiment results showed that the formulas of the transmission characteristics were correct only when the change of the input force was slow enough, which was inconsistent with the static balance assumption during formulation. A robot with a tendon-sheath transmission system was designed, which could finish some dexterous actions in the narrow spaces.

Keywords: tendon-sheath transmission systems; transmission characteristics; robot manipulators; robot design; dexterous robots; differential tendon elements; Coulomb friction.

DOI: 10.1504/IJISTA.2010.030201

International Journal of Intelligent Systems Technologies and Applications, 2010 Vol.8 No.1/2/3/4, pp.215 - 230

Available online: 11 Dec 2009 *

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