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Electric-Pneumatic Actuator: A New Muscle for Locomotion

Ahmad Sharbafi, Maziar and Shin, Hirofumi and Zhao, Guoping and Hosoda, Koh and Seyfarth, Andre (2017):
Electric-Pneumatic Actuator: A New Muscle for Locomotion.
In: Actuators, MDPI, 6, (4), ISSN 2076-0825,
DOI: 10.3390/act6040030,
[Online-Edition: https://doi.org/10.3390/act6040030],
[Article]

Abstract

A better understanding of how actuator design supports locomotor function may help develop novel and more functional powered assistive devices or robotic legged systems. Legged robots comprise passive parts (e.g., segments, joints and connections) which are moved in a coordinated manner by actuators. In this study, we propose a novel concept of a hybrid electric-pneumatic actuator (EPA) as an enhanced variable impedance actuator (VIA). EPA is consisted of a pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM) and an electric motor (EM). In contrast to other VIAs, the pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM) within the EPA provides not only adaptable compliance, but also an additional powerful actuator with muscle-like properties, which can be arranged in different combinations (e.g., in series or parallel) to the EM. The novel hybrid actuator shares the advantages of both integrated actuator types combining precise control of EM with compliant energy storage of PAM, which are required for efficient and adjustable locomotion. Experimental and simulation results based on the new dynamic model of PAM support the hypothesis that combination of the two actuators can improve efficiency (energy and peak power) and performance, while does not increase control complexity and weight, considerably. Finally, the experiments on EPA adapted bipedal robot (knee joint of the BioBiped3 robot) show improved efficiency of the actuator at different frequencies.

Item Type: Article
Erschienen: 2017
Creators: Ahmad Sharbafi, Maziar and Shin, Hirofumi and Zhao, Guoping and Hosoda, Koh and Seyfarth, Andre
Title: Electric-Pneumatic Actuator: A New Muscle for Locomotion
Language: English
Abstract:

A better understanding of how actuator design supports locomotor function may help develop novel and more functional powered assistive devices or robotic legged systems. Legged robots comprise passive parts (e.g., segments, joints and connections) which are moved in a coordinated manner by actuators. In this study, we propose a novel concept of a hybrid electric-pneumatic actuator (EPA) as an enhanced variable impedance actuator (VIA). EPA is consisted of a pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM) and an electric motor (EM). In contrast to other VIAs, the pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM) within the EPA provides not only adaptable compliance, but also an additional powerful actuator with muscle-like properties, which can be arranged in different combinations (e.g., in series or parallel) to the EM. The novel hybrid actuator shares the advantages of both integrated actuator types combining precise control of EM with compliant energy storage of PAM, which are required for efficient and adjustable locomotion. Experimental and simulation results based on the new dynamic model of PAM support the hypothesis that combination of the two actuators can improve efficiency (energy and peak power) and performance, while does not increase control complexity and weight, considerably. Finally, the experiments on EPA adapted bipedal robot (knee joint of the BioBiped3 robot) show improved efficiency of the actuator at different frequencies.

Journal or Publication Title: Actuators
Volume: 6
Number: 4
Publisher: MDPI
Divisions: 03 Department of Human Sciences > Institut für Sportwissenschaft
03 Department of Human Sciences
Date Deposited: 05 Nov 2017 20:55
DOI: 10.3390/act6040030
Official URL: https://doi.org/10.3390/act6040030
URN: urn:nbn:de:tuda-tuprints-69282
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