RBE MS Thesis Presentation
Biologically Inspired Legs and Novel Flow Control Valve Towards a New Approach for Accessible Wearable Robotics
Abstract: The Humanoid Walking Robot (HWR) is a research platform for the study of legged and wearable robots actuated with Hydro Muscles. The fluid operated HWR is representative of a class of biologically inspired, and in some aspects highly biomimetic robotic musculoskeletal appendages showing certain advantages in comparison to more conventional artificial limbs and braces for physical therapy/rehabilitation, assistance of daily living, and augmentation. The HWR closely mimics the human body structure and function, including the skeleton, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. The HWR can emulate close to human-like movements even when subjected to simplified control laws. One of the main drawbacks of this approach is the inaccessibility of an appropriate fluid flow management support system, in the form of affordable, lightweight, compact, and good quality valves suitable for robotics applications. To resolve this shortcoming, the Compact Robotic Flow Control Valve (CRFC Valve) is introduced and successfully proof-of-concept tested. The HWR added with the CRFC Valve has potential to be a highly energy efficient, lightweight, controllable, affordable, and customizable solution that can resolve single muscle action.
Thesis Advisor: Professor Marko Popovic
Thesis Committee: Professor Selcuk Guceri, Professor Michael Gennert