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EP/I016333/1 - Creative Design of Parallel Manipulators with Multiple Operation Modes

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Dr X Kong EP/I016333/1 - Creative Design of Parallel Manipulators with Multiple Operation Modes

Principal Investigator - Sch of Engineering and Physical Science, Heriot-Watt University

Scheme

First Grant Scheme

Research Areas

Robotics Robotics

Collaborators

Caley Automation Ltd Caley Automation Ltd

Start Date

07/2011

End Date

12/2012

Value

£101,022

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Grant Description

Summary and Description of the grant

The changing environment and variable tasks in manufacturing, packaging and food industries require the development of low-cost and reconfigurable manipulators which is critical for rapid change-over. This becomes even more important in the current economical crisis and may contribute to reviving manufacturing as pledged by the UK government. The project - creative design of parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes - is proposed to meet such needs. Parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes belong to a novel family of reconfigurable manipulators, which may adapt to changing environment and production requirement like a transformer and have the characteristics of parallel manipulators, which have a multi-arm like structure rather than the single-arm like structures of tranditional industrial manipulators. Despite the recent advances in reconfigurable manipulators and parallel manipulators, the research on reconfigurable parallel manipulators is still in its fantacy. This project aims at exploring the creative design of parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes. Unlike the reconfigurable manipulators proposed so far, parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes need fewer actuators and do not require disassembly for reconfiguration. Recently, we have obtained a family of parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes which can be used to control the planar motions along three orthogonal planes. In our design, only three actuators are needed, while at least six actuators are needed if the current industrial manipulators are used to carry out the same task. This project will lead to the development of a general framework for the design of parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes. Two issues will be addressed: a) how to invent parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes, and b) how to reconfigure the parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes. This research will develop a systematic approach and a framework for the design of innovative parallel manipulators with multiple operation modes based on the advances in mechanisms and machine science, robotics, mathematics and control. A prototype will be built to corroborate and validate the proposed approaches using advanced modelling, CAD (computer-aided-design), rapid prototyping and control technologies. This research will benefit the academic community in the fields of mechanisms, robotics and automation, mechatronics and product design and may be further extended to biomedical research such as protein folding and misfolding. It will also benefit users from all industry sectors who will have improved productivity and better products. Further research may lead to low-cost and energy efficient manipulators.

Structured Data / Microdata


Grant Event Details:
Name: Creative Design of Parallel Manipulators with Multiple Operation Modes - EP/I016333/1
Start Date: 2011-07-26T00:00:00+00:00
End Date: 2012-12-31T00:00:00+00:00

Organization: Heriot-Watt University

Description: The changing environment and variable tasks in manufacturing, packaging and food industries require the development of low-cost and reconfigurable manipulators which is critical for rapid change-over. This becomes even more important in the current economi ...