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A Polyhedral Bound on the Indeterminate Contact Forces in Planar Quasi-Rigid Fixturing and Grasping Arrangements

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3 Author(s)
E. Rimon ; Dept. of Mech. Eng., Israel Inst. of Technol., Haifa ; J. W. Burdick ; T. Omata

This paper considers multiple-contact arrangements where several bodies grasp, fixture, or support an object via frictional point contacts. Within a strictly rigid-body modeling paradigm, when an external wrench (i.e., force and torque) acts on the object, the reaction forces at the contacts are typically indeterminate and span an unbounded linear space. This paper analyzes the contact reaction forces within a generalized quasi-rigid-body framework that keeps the desirable geometric properties of rigid-body modeling, while also including more realistic physical effects. We describe two basic principles that govern the contact mechanics of quasi-rigid bodies. The main result is that for any given external wrench acting on a quasi-rigid object, the statically feasible contact reaction forces lie in a bounded Polyhedral set that depends on the external wrench, the grasp's geometry, and the preload forces. Moreover, the bound does not depend upon any detailed knowledge of the contact mechanics parameters. When some knowledge of the parameters is available, the bound can be sharpened. The polyhedral bound is useful for "robust" grasp and fixture synthesis. Given a set of external wrenches that may act upon an object, the grasp's geometry and preload forces can be chosen such that all of these external wrenches would be automatically supported by the contacts

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Robotics  (Volume:22 ,  Issue: 2 )