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Haldun Komsuoglu





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Design of a Bio-inspired Dynamical Vertical Climbing Robot

Proceedings of Robotics Science and Systems, 2007

Clark, J. E.* and Goldman, D. I.† and Lin, P-C.* and Lynch, G.* and Chen, T. S.‡ and Komsuoglu, H.* and Full, R. J.‡ and Koditschek, D. E.*
*: Electrical and Systems Engineering, Department, University of Pennsylvania
†: School of Physics, Georgia Institute of Technology
‡: PolyPedal Laboratory, Department of Integrative Biology, University of California at Berkeley
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This paper reviews a template for dynamical climbing originating in biology, explores its hypothetical utility, and offers a preliminary look at empirical data bearing on the feasibility of adapting it to build a robot that “runs” vertically upward. The recently proposed pendulous climbing model abstracts remarkable similarities in dynamic wall scaling behavior exhibited by radically different animal species. The present paper’s first contribution summarizes a continuing numerical study of this model to hypothesize that these animals’ apparently “wasteful” commitments to lateral oscillations may be justified by a significant gain in the dynamical stability and, hence, the robustness of their resulting climbing capability. We explore numerically a scaled version of this template devised to inform the design of a physically realizable robotic mechanism with the same climbing behavior. The paper’s second contribution documents the design and offers very preliminary empirical data arising from a physical instantiation of this model. Notwithstanding the significant differences between the proposed bio-inspired template and its physical robot model, these intial data suggest the mechanical climber may be capable of roughly reproducing both the motions and ground reaction forces characteristic of dynamical climbing animals. Even without proper tuning the robot’s steady state trajectories manifest a substantial exchange of kinetic and potential energy, resulting in vertical speeds of 0.14 m/s (0.35 bl/s) and claiming its place as the first bio-inspired dynamical legged climbing platform.
BibTeX entry
  author = {Clark, J. E. and Goldman, D. I. and Lin, P-C. and Lynch, G. and Chen, T. S. and Komsuoglu, H. and 
        Full, R. J. and Koditschek, D. E.},
  title = {Design of a Bio-inspired Dynamical Vertical Climbing Robot},
  booktitle = {Proceedings of Robotics Science and Systems},
  year = {2007}
Related Sites
Prof. Jonathan Clark’s Research Page - This site contains Prof. Clark’s research activities.
DynoClimber? - Detailed information on the DynoClimber platform and experiments conducted by UPenn.

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