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Development of the UB Hand IV: Overview of Design Solutions and Enabling Technologies

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4 Author(s)
Melchiorri, C. ; DEI, Univ. di Bologna, Bologna, Italy ; Palli, G. ; Berselli, G. ; Vassura, G.

The replication of the human hand's functionality and appearance is one of the main reasons for the development of robot hands. Despite 40 years of research in the field [1], the reproduction of human capabilities, in terms of dexterous manipulation, still seems unachievable by the state-of-the-art technologies. From a design perspective, even defining the optimal functionalities of a robotic end-effector is quite a challenging task since possible applications of these devices span industrial robotics, humanoid robotics, rehabilitation medicines, and prosthetics, to name a few. Therefore, it is reasonable to think that the design solutions, which are well suited to a single domain, might not be readily taken as general guidelines. For example, industrial manipulators are often equipped with basic grippers, which are conceived so as to increase the throughput and the reliability, and are assumed to operate in structured environments. In this case, the enhanced manipulation skills and the subsequent cost increases must be carefully motivated by the application requirements.

Published in:

Robotics & Automation Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:20 ,  Issue: 3 )