Challenges in using Compliant Ligaments for Position Estimation within Robotic Joints

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Title: Challenges in using Compliant Ligaments for Position Estimation within Robotic Joints
Authors: Russell, F
Gao, L
Ellison, P
Vaidyanathan, R
Item Type: Conference Paper
Abstract: The mechanical advantages of bio-inspired condylar robotic knee joints for use in prosthetics or rehabilitation has been argued extensively in literature. A common limitation of these designs is the difficulty of estimating joint angle and therefore accurately controlling the joint. Furthermore, the potential role of ligament-like structures in robotic knees is not very well established. In this work, we investigate the role of compliant stretch sensing ligaments and their integration into a condylar robotic knee. Simulations and experiments are executed out in order to establish whether measurement of stretch in these structures can be used to produce a new feedback controller for joint position. We report results from a computer model, as well as the design and construction of a robotic knee that show, for a chosen condyle shape, ligament stretch is a function of muscle force and joint velocity as well as joint angle. We have developed a genetic algorithm optimised controller incorporating ligament feedback that demonstrates improved performance for a desired joint angle in response to step inputs. The controller showed marginal improvement in response to a cyclic command signal and further investigation is required in order to use these measurements in robust control, nevertheless we believe these results demonstrate the that ligament-like structures have the potential to improve the performance of robotic knees for prosthetics and rehabilitation devices.
Issue Date: 15-Aug-2017
Date of Acceptance: 21-Apr-2017
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/53696
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1109/ICORR.2017.8009455
ISBN: 978-1-5386-2295-7
ISSN: 1945-7901
Publisher: IEEE
Journal / Book Title: Proceedings of 2017 International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics (ICORR)
Copyright Statement: © 2017 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. Permission from IEEE must be obtained for all other uses, in any current or future media, including reprinting/republishing this material for advertising or promotional purposes, creating new collective works, for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or reuse of any copyrighted component of this work in other works.
Sponsor/Funder: Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC)
Funder's Grant Number: EP/K503381/1
Conference Name: 2017 International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics (ICORR)
Publication Status: Published
Start Date: 2017-07-17
Finish Date: 2017-07-20
Conference Place: London, UK
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Engineering
Mechanical Engineering



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