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Parts manipulation on an intelligent motion surface

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2 Author(s)
Wenheng Liu ; Information Sci. Inst., Marina del Rey, CA, USA ; Will, P.

This paper introduces the concept of using a dense array of individual manipulator mechanisms as a programmable intelligent motion surface (IMS). The individual robots in the array can be implemented in a variety of technologies with different sizes. Programmability is the common necessary characteristic for an IMS; the array, with groups of contiguous robots acting in unison, can be programmed to various configurations to have the effect of imparting force fields on objects being carried on its surface. The appropriate choice of force fields is shown to cause parts placed on the array to be moved in manners that are useful. These include such functions as translation, rotation, orientation alignment, spatial filtering and the feeding of parts. The use of the IMS is described for primitive assembly operations. Limitations of the approach, extensions and possibilities for future work, particularly in microelectromechanical system (MEMS) implementations, are discussed in detail in the paper. The practicability and the programming of such an IMS-based active assembly bench was explored in a simulated environment

Published in:

Intelligent Robots and Systems 95. 'Human Robot Interaction and Cooperative Robots', Proceedings. 1995 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on  (Volume:3 )

Date of Conference:

5-9 Aug 1995