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  1. The addition of geometric reconfigurability in a cable driven parallel robot (CDPR) introduces kinematic redundancies which can be exploited for manipulating structural and mechanical properties of the robot through redundancy resolution. In the event of a cable failure, a reconfigurable CDPR (rCDPR) can also realign its geometric arrangement to overcome the effects of cable failure and recover the original expected trajectory and complete the trajectory tracking task. In this paper we discuss a fault tolerant control (FTC) framework that relies on an Interactive Multiple Model (IMM) adaptive estimation filter for simultaneous fault detection and diagnosis (FDD) and task recovery. The redundancy resolution scheme for the kinematically redundant CDPR takes into account singularity avoidance, manipulability and wrench quality maximization during trajectory tracking. We further introduce a trajectory tracking methodology that enables the automatic task recovery algorithm to consistently return to the point of failure. This is particularly useful for applications where the planned trajectory is of greater importance than the goal positions, such as painting, welding or 3D printing applications. The proposed control framework is validated in simulation on a planar rCDPR with elastic cables and parameter uncertainties to introduce modeled and unmodeled dynamics in the system as it tracks amore »complete trajectory despite the occurrence of multiple cable failures. As cables fail one by one, the robot topology changes from an over-constrained to a fully constrained and then an under-constrained CDPR. The framework is applied with a constant-velocity kinematic feedforward controller which has the advantage of generating steady-state inputs despite dynamic oscillations during cable failures, as well as a Linear Quadratic Regulator (LQR) feedback controller to locally dampen these oscillations.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 17, 2024
  2. Abstract

    As miscellaneous as the Plant Kingdom is, correspondingly diverse are the opportunities for taking inspiration from plants for innovations in science and engineering. Especially in robotics, properties like growth, adaptation to environments, ingenious materials, sustainability, and energy-effectiveness of plants provide an extremely rich source of inspiration to develop new technologies—and many of them are still in the beginning of being discovered. In the last decade, researchers have begun to reproduce complex plant functions leading to functionality that goes far beyond conventional robotics and this includes sustainability, resource saving, and eco-friendliness. This perspective drawn by specialists in different related disciplines provides a snapshot from the last decade of research in the field and draws conclusions on the current challenges, unanswered questions on plant functions, plant-inspired robots, bioinspired materials, and plant-hybrid systems looking ahead to the future of these research fields.

  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 1, 2023
  4. Abstract
    This dataset includes chironomid species assemblage data and air temperature estimates from 400+ lakes across northern North America, Greenland, Iceland, and Svalbard to inform interpretations of Holocene subfossil chironomid assemblages used in paleolimnological reconstruction. This calibration-set was developed by re-identifying and taxonomically harmonizing chironomids in previously described surface sediment samples, with identifications made at finer taxonomic resolution than in original publications (which are cited in the publication describing this dataset, Medeiros et al. 2022 Quaternary Science Reviews, and should be cited by dataset users). Site summer air temperatures are newly estimated with a consistent method using the WorldClim 2.1 gridded bioclimatic dataset. The large geographic coverage of this dataset is intended to provide climatic analogs for a wide range of Holocene climates in the northwest North Atlantic region and North American Arctic, including Greenland. For many of these regions, modern calibration data for paleoclimate proxies are sparse despite keen interest in paleoclimate reconstructions from high latitudes. Dataset users should consult and cite the following source publication: Medeiros, A.S., Chipman, M., Francis, D.R., Hamerlik, L., Langdon, P., Puleo, P.J.K., Schellinger, G., Steigleder, R., Walker, I.R., Woodroffe, S., and Axford, Y. 2022. A continent-scale chironomid training set for reconstructing arctic temperatures.More>>
  5. Compliant grasping is crucial for secure handling objects not only vary in shapes but also in mechanical properties. We propose a novel soft robotic gripper with decoupled stiffness and shape control capability for performing adaptive grasping with minimum system complexity. The proposed soft fingers conform to object shapes facilitating the handling of objects of different types, shapes, and sizes. Each soft gripper finger has a length constraining mechanism (an articulable rigid backbone) and is powered by pneumatic muscle actuators. We derive the kinematic model of the gripper and use an empirical approach to simultaneously map input pressures to stiffness control and bending deformation of fingers. We use these mappings to demonstrate decoupled stiffness and shape (bending) control of various grasping configurations. We conduct tests to quantify the grip quality when holding objects as the gripper changes orientation, the ability to maintain the grip as the gripper is subjected to translational and rotational movements, and the external force perturbations required to release the object from the gripper under various stiffness and shape (bending) settings. The results validate the proposed gripper's performance and show how the decoupled stiffness and shape control can improve the grasping quality in soft robotic grippers.
  6. A reliable, accurate, and yet simple dynamic model is important to analyzing, designing, and controlling hybrid rigid–continuum robots. Such models should be fast, as simple as possible, and user-friendly to be widely accepted by the ever-growing robotics research community. In this study, we introduce two new modeling methods for continuum manipulators: a general reduced-order model (ROM) and a discretized model with absolute states and Euler–Bernoulli beam segments (EBA). In addition, a new formulation is presented for a recently introduced discretized model based on Euler–Bernoulli beam segments and relative states (EBR). We implement these models in a Matlab software package, named TMTDyn, to develop a modeling tool for hybrid rigid–continuum systems. The package features a new high-level language (HLL) text-based interface, a CAD-file import module, automatic formation of the system equation of motion (EOM) for different modeling and control tasks, implementing Matlab C-mex functionality for improved performance, and modules for static and linear modal analysis of a hybrid system. The underlying theory and software package are validated for modeling experimental results for (i) dynamics of a continuum appendage, and (ii) general deformation of a fabric sleeve worn by a rigid link pendulum. A comparison shows higher simulation accuracy (8–14% normalized error)more »and numerical robustness of the ROM model for a system with a small number of states, and computational efficiency of the EBA model with near real-time performances that makes it suitable for large systems. The challenges and necessary modules to further automate the design and analysis of hybrid systems with a large number of states are briefly discussed.« less