Analytical Design Of A Pneumatic Elastomer Robot With Deterministically Adjusted Stiffness

IEEE ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION LETTERS(2021)

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Abstract
This letter presents a novel Pneumatic Elastomer Robot (PER), called Deterministically Adjusted Stiffness-Pneumatic Elasotmer Robot (DAS-PER), that can concurrently display preprogrammed elongation and bending behaviors. Our design methodology integrates a comprehensive analytical modeling and additive manufacturing-based fabrication to (i) address current ad-hoc and arduous PERs' fabrication limitations, and (ii) enable deterministic stiffness and deformation behavior tuning based on the desired application. To thoroughly evaluate the efficacy of the presented modeling and fabrication approaches, based on the developed model, we first designed and fabricated two DAS-PERs with different bending and elongation stiffnesses. Next, we performed experimental studies to thoroughly evaluate and compare the expected and obtained deformation behaviors. Results demonstrated the efficacy of the fabrication procedure and model fidelity for successful tunability of DAS-PERs solely based on adjusting two internal structure diameter parameters.
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Key words
Soft robots, pneumatic elastomer robots, fluidic elastomer robots, compliant mechanisms
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