Efficient Reduced-Order Models for Soft Actuators

11/12/2018 ∙ by Yue Chen, et al. ∙ 0

Soft robotics have gained increased attention from the robotic community due to their unique features such as compliance and human safety. Impressive amount of soft robotic prototypes have shown their superior performance over their rigid counter parts in healthcare, rehabilitation, and search and rescue applications. However, soft robots are yet to capitalize on their potential outside laboratories and this could be attributed to lack of advanced sensing capabilities and real-time dynamic models. In this pilot study, we explore the use of high-accuracy, high-bandwidth deformation sensing via fiber optic strain sensing (FOSS) in soft bending actuators (SBA). Based on the high density sensor feedback, we introduce a reduced order kinematic model. Together with cubic spline interpolation, this model is able to reconstruct the continuous deformation of SBAs. The kinematic model is extended to derive an efficient real-time equation of motion and validated against the experimental data.

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