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research-article

Modeling Legged Micro-Robot Locomotion based on Contact Dynamics and Vibration in Multiple Modes and Axes

[+] Author and Article Information
Jinhong Qu

Vibration and Acoustics Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109
jinhongq@umich.edu

Clark B. Teeple

Vibration and Acoustics Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109
cbteeple@umich.edu

Kenn Oldham

Associate Professor Vibration and Acoustics Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109
oldham@umich.edu

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4035959 History: Received October 10, 2016; Revised January 30, 2017

Abstract

A dynamic model is developed for small-scale robots with multiple high-frequency-actuated compliant elastic legs and a rigid body. The motion of the small-scale robots results from dual-direction motion of piezoelectric actuators attached to the legs, with impact dynamics increasing robot locomotion complexity. A dynamic model is developed to describe the small-scale robot motion in the presence of variable properties of the underlying terrain. The dynamic model is derived from beam theory with appropriate boundary and loading conditions and considers each robot leg as a continuous structure moving in two directions. Robot body motion is modeled in up to five degrees of freedom using a rigid body approximation for the central robot chassis. Individual modes of the resulting multi-mode robot are treated as second order linear systems. The dynamic model is tested with two different centimeter-scale robot prototypes having an analogous actuation scheme to millimeter-scale micro-robots. In accounting for the interaction between the robot and ground, a dynamic model using the first two modes of each leg shows good agreement with experimental results for the centimeter-scale prototypes, in terms of both magnitude and the trends in robot locomotion with respect to actuation conditions.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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