RESEARCH PAPERS: Mechanisms Papers

On the Redundant-Drive Backlash-Free Robotic Mechanisms

[+] Author and Article Information
Sun-Lai Chang, Lung-Wen Tsai

Mechanical Engineering Department and Systems Research Center, The University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742

J. Mech. Des 115(2), 247-254 (Jun 01, 1993) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2919184 History: Received March 01, 1990; Online June 02, 2008


In this paper, we introduce a new and innovative concept for the control of backlash in gear-coupled robotic mechanisms. The concept utilizes redundant unidirectional drives to assure positive coupling of gear meshes at all times. Based on this concept, a methodology for the enumeration of admissible redundant-drive backlash-free robotic mechanisms has been established. Some typical two- and three-DOF mechanisms have been sketched. Furthermore, actuator torques have been derived as functions of either joint torques or end-effector dynamic performance requirements. A redundantly driven manipulator has the fail-safe advantage in that, except for the loss of backlash control, it can continue to function when one of its actuators fails. It does not have the compliance problem associated with tendon-driven manipulators. A two-DOF backlash-free experimental arm is currently under construction to demonstrate the principle.

Copyright © 1993 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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