TÜBİTAK 3001 Project: Joint Design in Foldable Robots

Joint Design and Analysis of Miniature Robots Manufactured with Non-conventional Manufacturing Methods

Mechanisms created using alternative manufacturing techniques, such as PC-MEMS or Pop-up MEMS, can scale down to much smaller sizes compared to mechanisms manufactured using conventional methods. However, the mechanical structures that can be fabricated are limited with pin-joints and rigid linkages. The stiffness values of the mechanisms created with PC-MEMS and Pop-up MEMS are dictated by the polymer layer, which are quite soft, hence the load-bearing capabilities of these mechanisms are limited. Therefore, the number of functional equipment (end-effectors, sensors, etc.) that can be carried by and integrated to such miniature robots is low. The aim of this project is to design, fabricate, and optimize the pin joints used in miniature robots not suitable for conventional manufacturing methods that are fabricated using non-conventional techniques such as PC-MEMS and Pop-up MEMS. During this project, the mechanics of pin joints and rigid linkages, i.e. basis of PC-MEMS and Pop-up MEMS robots, will be modeled, these parts will be manufactured, and the joints will be optimized in terms of payload capacity.

The results shown are from:

[1] Karakadiolu, C., Ozcan, O. “Accurate Modeling of Compliant Mechanism Kinematics in Foldable Miniature Robots Using Large Deflection Beam Theory,” ASME Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics, Under Review.