Contributions to the performance analysis of continuum parallel robots

Zaccaria, Federico (2023) Contributions to the performance analysis of continuum parallel robots, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Meccanica e scienze avanzate dell'ingegneria, 36 Ciclo.
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Continuum parallel robots (CPRs) are manipulators employing multiple flexible beams arranged in parallel and connected to a rigid end-effector. CPRs promise higher payload and accuracy than serial CRs while keeping great flexibility. As the risk of injury during accidental contacts between a human and a CPR should be reduced, CPRs may be used in large-scale collaborative tasks or assisted robotic surgery. There exist various CPR designs, but the prototype conception is rarely based on performance considerations, and the CPRs realization in mainly based on intuitions or rigid-link parallel manipulators architectures. This thesis focuses on the performance analysis of CPRs, and the tools needed for such evaluation, such as workspace computation algorithms. In particular, workspace computation strategies for CPRs are essential for the performance assessment, since the CPRs workspace may be used as a performance index or it can serve for optimal-design tools. Two new workspace computation algorithms are proposed in this manuscript, the former focusing on the workspace volume computation and the certification of its numerical results, while the latter aims at computing the workspace boundary only. Due to the elastic nature of CPRs, a key performance indicator for these robots is the stability of their equilibrium configurations. This thesis proposes the experimental validation of the equilibrium stability assessment on a real prototype, demonstrating limitations of some commonly used assumptions. Additionally, a performance index measuring the distance to instability is originally proposed in this manuscript. Differently from the majority of the existing approaches, the clear advantage of the proposed index is a sound physical meaning; accordingly, the index can be used for a more straightforward performance quantification, and to derive robot specifications.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
Zaccaria, Federico
Dottorato di ricerca
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
Continuum Parallel Robots, Performance Analysis, Workspace Evaluation, Equilibrium Stability
Data di discussione
20 Dicembre 2023

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