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Design Principles for a Family of Direct-Drive Legged Robots

PLEASE SEE NEWER JOURNAL VERSION OF THIS PAPER: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpls/abs_all.jsp?arnumber=7403902

2015 Robotics: Science and Systems, Workshop, July, 2015.

Gavin Kenneally, Avik De and D. E. Koditschek
Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, Electrical and Systems Engineering, University of Pennsylvania
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Direct-drive actuators (no gearbox) are desirable for robotics applications due to their lack of backlash, low friction, and high mechanical stiffness. These actuators also facilitate the implementation of control strategies such as torque control, impedance control, and virtual spring-damper systems by removing the complicated dynamics associated with the gearbox.

Since gear ratios in robots are typically 20:1 to 300:1, by removing the gearbox, mass specific torque (not power) becomes the first limiting resource in electromagnetically actuated robots. Adopting the perspective of locomotion as self-manipulation, the force/torque resource becomes even more scarce as the machine’s payload must now include the mass of the robot itself. The design problems associated with actuator selection, configuration, recruitment, and leg kinematics must therefore address a central theme of mitigating the mass specific torque/force problem.

BibTeX entry
	title = {Design Principles for a Family of Direct-Drive Legged Robots},
	booktitle = {Robotics: Science and Systems, Workshop},
	author = {Kenneally, Gavin, De, Avik and Koditschek, Daniel E.},
	year = {2015}

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