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Mechatronics, IEEE/ASME Transactions on

Issue 1 • Date Feb. 2012

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Displaying Results 1 - 25 of 26
  • Table of contents

    Page(s): C1 - C4
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics publication information

    Page(s): C2
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    Freely Available from IEEE
  • Guest Editorial

    Page(s): 1 - 7
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (322 KB)  

    The seven papers in this focused section on marine mechatronic systems represent a cross section of topics. View full abstract»

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  • Development of an In Situ pH Calibrator in Deep Sea Environments

    Page(s): 8 - 15
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (845 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    The pH Calibrator is an instrument for in situ calibration and measurement of chemical species (pH) in aqueous fluids at elevated pressure. The calibration device consists of two interactive systems: a data-logging sensor system and an automated fluid de- livery system. The solid-state pH sensor array is sealed in a flow cell to decrease measurement response time. The automated fluid de- livery system consists of a pump and process control valves, which intermittently deliver seawater samples for measurement. Following measurement cycles, the pH buffer solutions are drawn into the sensor cell to perform two-point calibration. Here, we describe the initial steps in its conversion from a battery-powered instrument for short-term application into a unit that can be used to take full advantage of cabled-powered observatories that will soon be coming online at a number of locations in marine environments. Accordingly, we made use of the continuous power supply and TCP/IP network capability intrinsic to the Monterey Accelerated Research System (MARS)-cabled ocean observatory, Monterey Bay, CA, to reconfigure the unit in anticipation of future seafloor deployments. The flow through system has been further optimized to reduce dead volume effects in the calibration process, while the mechanical system can now better tolerate increases in fluid discharge pressure and flow rate for long-term operations. Furthermore, the sensor head is now equipped with a novel valve to enhance operations in hydrothermal diffuse flow environments. To gain full access to the MARS-cabled observatory, the dc-dc power converter module and Ethernet to serial module are integrated to the electronics. The pH Calibrator has passed the wet node simulator tests in a seawater tank at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, moving the project closer to fulfilling long-term objectives for marine studies. View full abstract»

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  • Autonomous Depth Adjustment for Underwater Sensor Networks: Design and Applications

    Page(s): 16 - 24
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (723 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    To fully understand the ocean environment requires sensing the full water column. Utilizing a depth adjustment system on an underwater sensor network provides this while also improving global sensing and communications. This paper presents a depth adjustment system for waters up to 50 m deep that connects to the aquanode sensor network nodes. We performed experiments characterizing and demonstrating the functionality of the depth adjustment system. We discuss the application of this device in improving acoustic communication and also verify the functionality of a decentralized depth adjustment algorithm that optimizes the placement of the nodes for collecting sensing data. View full abstract»

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  • Design and Locomotion Control of a Biomimetic Underwater Vehicle With Fin Propulsion

    Page(s): 25 - 35
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1010 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    As a novel biologically inspired underwater vehicle, a robotic manta ray (RoMan-II) has been developed for potential marine applications. Manta ray can perform diversified locomotion patterns in water by manipulating two wide tins. These motion patterns have been implemented on the developed fish robot, including swimming by flapping fins, turning by modulating phase relations of fins, and online transition of different motion patterns. The movements are achieved by using a model of artificial central pattern generators (CPGs) constructed with coupled nonlinear oscillators. This paper focuses on the analytical formulation of coupling terms in the CPG model and the implementation issues of the CPG-based control on the fish robot. The control method demonstrated on the manta ray robot is expected to be a frame- work that can tackle locomotion control problems in other types of multifin-actuated fish robots or more general robots with rhythmic movement patterns. View full abstract»

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  • Modeling, Simulation, and Performance of a Synergistically Propelled Ichthyoid

    Page(s): 36 - 45
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (911 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    We have developed a novel type of submersible named the Synergistically Propelled Ichthyoid (SPI). The SPI is propelled by the synergistic combination of jet action and oscillatory motion of a fluttering fluid-conveying tail. Two dynamic models for an SPI are presented and solved: an analytically tractable model and a more complex model that captures the complete dynamics in two dimensions. The latter model has been solved numerically-these simulations show a benefit of using a fluttering tail relative to a dimensionally identical rigid tail. Construction details of an exper- imental realization are provided, and preliminary measurements taken using that platform are also provided. These measurements qualitatively confirm the simulation's conclusion that a fluttering flexible tail is capable of higher speed than a dimensionally identical rigid tail. View full abstract»

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  • Girona 500 AUV: From Survey to Intervention

    Page(s): 46 - 53
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (546 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper outlines the specifications and basic design approach taken on the development of the Girona 500, an autonomous underwater vehicle whose most remarkable characteristic is its capacity to reconfigure for different tasks. The capabilities of this new vehicle range from different forms of seafloor survey to inspection and intervention tasks. View full abstract»

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  • Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Operations Beneath Coastal Sea Ice

    Page(s): 54 - 64
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (781 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Use of an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) to obtain environmental observations beneath coastal sea ice offshore of Barrow, AK, is described. This study is motivated by the desire to obtain cross-shore hydrographic transects (temperature, salinity, and velocity versus depth) that would provide estimates of the transport of relatively dense, salty water from the Chukchi Sea to the Arctic Ocean in winter. Although person-portable AUVs are well suited to the task, it was recognized that achieving the science goals would require increasing the range of acoustic navigation and communication as well as developing a robust approach to through ice deployment and recovery. These needs drove three modifications to the AUV: 1) incorporation of a lower frequency (10 kHz) transponder and associated hardware for navigation and communication; 2) addition of special-purpose sensors and hard- ware in a hull extension module; and 3) development of a homing algorithm utilizing Ultrashort Base Line acoustics. In March 2010, eight days of field work offshore of Barrow provided successful demonstration of the system. A total of 14 km of track lines be- neath a coastal ice floe were obtained from four missions, each successfully terminated by net-capture recovery. View full abstract»

    Open Access
  • Dynamic Guarding of Marine Assets Through Cluster Control of Automated Surface Vessel Fleets

    Page(s): 65 - 75
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (918 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    There is often a need to mark or patrol marine areas in order to prevent boat traffic from approaching critical regions, such as the location of a high-value vessel, a dive site, or a fragile marine ecosystem. In this paper, we describe the use of a fleet of robotic kayaks that provides such a function: the fleet circum- navigates the critical area until a threatening boat approaches, at which point the fleet establishes a barrier between the ship and the protected area. Coordinated formation control of the fleet is implemented through the use of the cluster-space control architecture, which is a full-order controller that treats the fleet as a virtual, articulating, kinematic mechanism. An application-specific layer interacts with the cluster-space controller in order for an operator to directly specify and monitor guarding-related parameters, such as the spacing between boats. This system has been experimentally verified in the field with a fleet of robotic kayaks. In this paper, we describe the control architecture used to establish the guarding behavior, review the design of the robotic kayaks, and present experimental data regarding the functionality and performance of the system. View full abstract»

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  • An Antisaturating Adaptive Preaction and a Slide Surface to Achieve Soft Landing Control for Electromagnetic Actuators

    Page(s): 76 - 85
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1406 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Real-control applications of any nature can be affected by saturation limits that generate windup. When saturation occurs in a device its performance deteriorates. Electromagnetic actuators for industrial applications are being utilized ever more frequently for positioning and tracking control problems. One of the most important requirements in tracking trajectories is to achieve a soft landing, which guarantees reliable functionality and a longer component life. This paper presents an application of a typical electromagnetic actuator through a hardware-in-the-loop structure in which a soft landing is required in the tracking trajectory. To avoid saturation, which prevents soft landings, a specific new control law is developed. The proposed technique is based on a cyclic adaptive current preaction combined with a sliding surface. The technique consists of building a control law so that the position of the valve at which its velocity assumes its minimum is as close as possible to the landing point. At this time point, the magnetic force compensates for the elastic force and the preaction component is switched off. An experimental setup using a hardware-in-the-loop to allow a pilot investigation, model validation, and testing before implementation is considered. Real measurements of the proposed method are shown. View full abstract»

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  • Robust Quantum-Inspired Reinforcement Learning for Robot Navigation

    Page(s): 86 - 97
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1436 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    A novel quantum-inspired reinforcement learning (QiRL) algorithm is proposed for navigation control of autonomous mobile robots. The QiRL algorithm adopts a probabilistic action selection policy and a new reinforcement strategy, which are inspired, respectively, by the collapse phenomenon in quantum measurement and amplitude amplification in quantum computation. Several simulated experiments of Markovian state transition demonstrate that QiRL is more robust to learning rates and initial states than traditional reinforcement learning. The QiRL approach is then applied to navigation control of a real mobile robot, and the simulated and experimental results show the effectiveness of the proposed approach. View full abstract»

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  • Real-Time Fiber-Optic Intubation Simulator With Force Feedback

    Page(s): 98 - 106
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (658 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Fiber-optic intubation is an emergency procedure that can be performed to intubate a patient when the patient has serious difficulty in breathing normally. The existing simulators for fiber-optic intubation procedure provide haptic feedback to the user when there is a contact with the vocal cord section, but they do not capture the grazing effect of the endoscope along the inner walls of the airway. The grazing on the inner walls of the airway, if not well controlled, could lead to unnecessary trauma for the patient. Hence, there is a need to provide this force feedback in a fiber-optic intubation simulator. We have built a fiber-optic intubation simulator with force feedback. This system is composed of a software simulation coupled with a physics-based simulation that enhances the visual experience. The software simulation is connected to a haptic feedback device. The device provides force feedback when contact is made with any section of the airway. The force feedback varies based on the position of contact and intensity of contact. We use a proportional and derivative (PD) controller to obtain force feedback at the vocal cord section and a variable magnetic field to capture the grazing effect of the endoscope along the inner walls of the airway. The movements of the endoscope are captured using rotary encoders (that read the insertion and the tip bend) and a compass module (that reads the twist angle of the endoscope along the long axis). These movements are used to navigate the virtual airway using a virtual endoscope. When collisions are encountered, the physics library evaluates the position of contact and the force with which contact is made. Force feedback is generated due to the interaction of the solenoids with the permanent magnets at the tip of the endoscope. This information helps the software to actu- ate the right combination of solenoids. The simulator will help to train all aspects of fiber-optic intubation, namely 1) developing the necessary psych- motor skills to successfully navigate the airway with minimal or no damage to the airway or vocal cords; and 2) cognitive skills to perform the procedure fast and effectively. View full abstract»

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  • Finite-Time Stabilization of a Comb-Drive Electrostatic Microactuator

    Page(s): 107 - 115
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (550 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    The inherent nonlinear characteristic between the electrostatic force and the applied voltage causes electrostatic microactuators to show the pull-in bifurcation phenomenon. Exploiting a closed-loop control for stabilizing the electrostatic microactuators in its full travel range is the primary objective in the control of such devices. In this paper, the dynamics of a transverse comb-drive electrostatic microactuator is established with considering the presence of parasitic and parametric uncertainties, and it is shown that the dynamics can be transformed into the third-order Brunovsky's canonical form. Then, a finite-time stabilizing controller is proposed for the third-order Brunovsky's canonical form systems, and the finite-time stability of the presented controller is shown. The robust finite-time stability of the controller under the parasitic and parametric uncertainties is also verified using numerical simulations. View full abstract»

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  • Haptic Teleoperation for 3-D Microassembly of Spherical Objects

    Page(s): 116 - 127
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1215 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    In this paper, teleoperated 3-D microassembly of spherical objects with haptic feedback is presented. A dual-tip gripper controlled through a haptic interface is used to pick-and-place microspheres (diameter: 4-6 μm). The proposed approach to align the gripper with the spheres is based on a user-driven exploration of the object to be manipulated. The haptic feedback is based on amplitude measurements from cantilevers in dynamic mode. That is, the operator perceives the contact while freely exploring the manipulation area. The data recorded during this exploration are processed online and generate a virtual guide to pull the user to the optimum contact point, allowing correct positioning of the dual tips. A preliminary scan is not necessary to compute the haptic feedback, which increases the intuitiveness of our system. For the pick-and-place operation, two haptic feedback schemes are proposed to either provide users with information about microscale interactions occurring during the operation, or to assist them while performing the task. As experimental validation, a two-layer pyramid composed of four microspheres is built in ambient conditions. View full abstract»

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  • Robot Finger Module With Multidirectional Adjustable Joint Stiffness

    Page(s): 128 - 135
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1051 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper describes a novel finger mechanism that enables a robot to perform a gentle and dexterous motion. This finger contains three joints, in which the proximal (PIP) and distal intraphalangeal (DIP) joints are coupled rigidly, and the metacarpophalangeal (MP) joint has a multidirectional passive compliance that is adjustable as in humans. In the MP joint, two kinds of silicone-rubber cushions (A-SRC and B-SRC) are placed between a motor-driven disk and an output link. A-SRC plays three roles: 1) transmission of the rotational motion from the motor to the output link by the friction force between the surface of A-SRC and the motor-driven disk; 2) absorption of external forces from multiple directions by its elastic deformation; and 3) sensing the directions and magnitudes of external forces with the change in inside pressure. B-SRC adjusts the characteristics of joint compliance by pressing A-SRC against the motor-driven disk. We investigate the basic performance of this finger module through several experiments. View full abstract»

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  • Development of a Hand-Assist Robot With Multi-Degrees-of-Freedom for Rehabilitation Therapy

    Page(s): 136 - 146
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1866 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper presents a virtual reality (VR)-enhanced new hand rehabilitation support system that enables patients to exercise alone. This system features a multi-degrees-of-freedom (DOF) motion assistance robot, a VR interface for patients, and a symmetrical master-slave motion assistance training strategy called "self-motion control," in which the stroke patient's healthy hand on the master side creates the assistance motion for the impaired hand on the slave side. To assist in performing the fine exercise motions needed for functional recovery of the impaired hand, the robot was constructed in an exoskeleton with 18 DOFs, to assist finger and thumb independent motions such as flexion/extension and abduction/adduction, thumb opposability, and hand-wrist co- ordinated motions. To enhance the effectiveness of the exercises, audio-visual instructions of each training motion using VR technology were designed with the input of clinician researchers. Experimental results from healthy subjects and patients show sufficient performance in the range of motion of the robot as well as sufficient assistance forces. View full abstract»

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  • Actuated Dynamic Walking in a Seven-Link Biped Robot

    Page(s): 147 - 156
    Multimedia
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (985 KB)  

    The authors have previously described a method for enabling fully actuated biped walking without prescribing joint angle trajectories or imposing kinematic constraints between joints. This method was hypothesized to offer a more natural-looking bipedal gait and a higher locomotive efficiency relative to methods requiring accurate joint trajectory tracking. In this paper, the authors present experimental evidence to support both hypotheses. Specifically, the authors describe the design of a seven- link bipedal robot appropriate for the previously proposed control method; present the implementation of the "nonkinematic" control approach on the biped robot; demonstrate (with data, photo- graphic sequences, and video) the "relaxed" style of walking resulting from the control method; and experimentally characterize the locomotive efficiency of the biped in terms of the mechanical cost of transport. The latter results are compared to corresponding measures reported elsewhere in the literature. View full abstract»

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  • Stackable 4-BAR Manipulators for Single Port Access Surgery

    Page(s): 157 - 166
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1637 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper proposes a new robotic manipulator using stack able 4-BAR mechanisms for single port access (SPA) surgery where the operation is performed by inserting multiple manipulators through one small body cavity. The proposed manipulator has the advantage that all actuators are able to be separated from the driving mechanism. In other words, it is possible to separate the electrical actuators from the mechanical linkage/joint components in the manipulators. Thus, the robotic manipulators, including the working joints and linkages, can be fabricated using selective materials that are light-weight and slim so that the multiple manipulators can be inserted through one small cavity. Moreover, since the suggested manipulator makes use of an individual 4-BAR mechanism to drive each independent joint, it is structurally strong. Using the kinematic model, we conduct a kinematic synthesis (design methodology) because the operating range of each working joint is usually limited by the design parameters of 4-BAR. Finally, we show that the stackable 4-BAR manipulator is a good alternative for SPA surgery through numerical simulations and implementation of the proposed manipulator. View full abstract»

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  • A Novel Kinematic Coupling-Based Trajectory Planning Method for Overhead Cranes

    Page(s): 166 - 173
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (476 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Motivated by the desire to achieve smooth trolley transportation and small payload swing, a kinematic coupling-based off-line trajectory planning method is proposed for 2-D overhead cranes. Specifically, to damp out unexpected payload swing, an antiswing mechanism is first introduced into an S-shape reference trajectory based on rigorous analysis for the coupling behavior between the payload and the trolley. After that, the combined trajectory is further tuned through a novel iterative learning strategy, which guarantees accurate trolley positioning. The performance of the proposed trajectory is proven by Lyapunov techniques and Barbalat's lemmas. Finally, some simulation and experiment results are provided to demonstrate the superior performance of the planned trajectory. View full abstract»

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  • Influence of User Grasping Position on Haptic Rendering

    Page(s): 174 - 182
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1282 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper investigates the effect of user grasping position on the performance of haptic rendering. Two dynamic models, with seven and eleven parameters, respectively, have been used to characterize the PHANToM haptic interface and the user. The parameter variability analysis shows that user grasping position significantly affects system dynamics. This variation also influences the phase margin of the system, leading to different damping factors in response to contacts with rigid virtual objects. To compensate this effect, an adaptive haptic rendering has been developed and successfully implemented, imposing a similar damping factor in the transient responses for all grip positions. View full abstract»

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  • Haptic Needle Unit for MR-Guided Biopsy and Its Control

    Page(s): 183 - 187
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (770 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    MRI provides high-resolution anatomical images and is ideal for certain image-guided interventions. Due to the physical separation between the patient region of interest and the workspace accessible by the clinician, direct force feedback from the target anatomy is missing during the interventions. This paper demonstrates the use of a master-slave haptic device for magnetic resonance-guided biopsy, using a novel haptic control scheme based upon a neural network speed model. Results have shown the feasibility of the proposed hardware design and control scheme. View full abstract»

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  • Discrete-Time State Feedback With Velocity Estimation Using a Dual Observer: Application to an Underwater Direct-Drive Grinding Robot

    Page(s): 187 - 191
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (461 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Hydro-Quebec's Research Institute has designed a robot to perform grinding tasks on underwater structures. This unique system is equipped with direct-drive linear motors, which have many useful dynamic characteristics. Since they lack intrinsic stiffness, however, their robustness to external disturbances must be achieved through the controller. Their lack of stiffness is a major disadvantage, because grinding generates very strong disturbance forces. Moreover, controller performance in such a system is limited by velocity feedback, which is usually derived from position encoder data. Though the state observer is recognized as an effective way to estimate velocity from position feedback without delay, it is not robust when applied to a system sensitive to external disturbances. The dual observer, which combines a state observer and a perturbation observer, aims to solve this problem. The simultaneous estimation of the state and disturbance not only improves state observer robustness, but also helps to compensate for disturbances in the controller. This paper presents the design of a discrete- time state-feedback controller with velocity estimation through a discrete- time dual observer. The design is validated by extensive comparative testing for a task that is as intensive as underwater grinding. View full abstract»

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  • A New Actuator System Using Dual-Motors and a Planetary Gear

    Page(s): 192 - 197
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1011 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper proposes a new actuator system for mobile robot applications. Since the actuator system to be proposed consists of dual-motors and a planetary gear, it is referred to as the dual-motor system using a planetary gear (DuPG) in this paper. The suggested DuPG improves the speed-torque performance by combining two motors with one planetary gear, in which one motor is for high speed and the other for high torque. In other words, it is able to realize a high speed at low torque, and high torque at low speed, as an automatic transmission operates in an automobile. The proposed actuator system is able to extend the speed/torque operation region. Finally, several experimental results are suggested to show a few advantages such as the extended speed/torque operation region and the enhanced energy efficiency. View full abstract»

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  • An Artificial Muscle Ring Oscillator

    Page(s): 197 - 200
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (533 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Dielectric elastomer artificial muscles have great potential for the creation of novel pumps, motors, and circuitry. Control of these devices requires an oscillator, either as a driver or clock circuit, which is typically provided as part of bulky, rigid, and costly external electronics. Oscillator circuits based on piezo-resistive dielectric elastomer switch technology provide a way to embed oscillatory behavior into artificial muscle devices. Previous oscillator circuits were not digital, able to function without a spring mass system, able to self-start, or suitable for miniaturization. In this paper we present an artificial muscle ring oscillator that meets these needs. The oscillator can self-start, create a stable 1 Hz square wave output, and continue to function despite degradation of the switching elements. Additionally, the oscillator provides a platform against which the performance of different dielectric elastomer switch materials can be benchmarked. View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics encompasses all practical aspects of the theory and methods of mechatronics, the synergetic integration of mechanical engineering with electronic and intelligent computer control in the design and manufacture of industrial products and processes.

Full Aims & Scope

Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Okyay Kaynak
Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Bogazici University
34342 Istanbul, Turkey
okyay.kaynak@boun.edu.tr