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A configuration map is defined and computed, mapping all configurations of a part before an elementary manipulative operation to all possible outcomes. Configuration maps provide a basis for planning the operation sequences which occur in parts-feeder designs or in more general sensorless manipulation strategies for robots. Sequences of elementary operations are represented as matrix-products of configuration maps for the individual operations. Efficient methods for searching the space of all operations sequences are described. As an example we consider a class of parts feeders based on a conveyor belt. Parts arrive on the belt in random initial orientations. By interacting with a series of stationary fences angled across the belt, the parts are aligned into a unique final orientation independent of their initial orientation. The planning problem is to create (given the shape of a part) a sequence of fences which will align that part. We demonstrate the automated design of such parts feeders.
Robotics and Automation. Proceedings. 1987 IEEE International Conference on (Volume:4 )
Date of Conference: Mar 1987