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I Introduction 1. What is robot The word robot is derived from the Czech word robota meaning slave labour.

Frankenstein is the first science fiction story by Mark Shelley (1817) created a humanoid monster, which then proceeds to raise havoc in the local community in England. The story was popularized through a movie picture and made a lasting impression on the minds of millions of people. In the Czech play robota by Capek, the robots are designed to replace human workers and are portrayed as very efficient and indistinguishable from human beings except for their lack of emotions. The play has a tragic end when the robots rebel against their human masters and destroy the entire human race except one man so that he can continue making robots! In contrast to the horrors of mechanization in Capeks play, the science fiction writer Issac Asimov coined the word robotics to describe the study of robots in his story Runaround. Asimov depicts robots as harmless and totally under the control of human beings. A robot in our time is meant an industrial robot, also called a robotic manipulator or a robotic arm. A robotic arm is roughly similar to a human arm and can be modelled as a chain of rigid links interconnected by flexible joints. The links resemble the human organs like chest, upper arm and fore arm, while the joints correspond to the shoulder, elbow, and wrist. At the end of robotic arm is an end-effector, also called a tool, gripper, or hand. The tool sometimes possesses two or more fingers that can open and close. The modern industrial robot, as it first appeared, bore little resemblance to the science fiction famous robots. Figures 1.1 and 1.2 show a PUMA (Programmable Universal Machine for Assembly) and a T3 (The Tomorrow Tool). The definition of modern robots as per Webster dictionary is: an automatic device that performs functions normally ascribed to humans or a machine in the form of a human. The Robot Institute of America (1969) defines robot as a re-programmable, multi-functional manipulator designed to move materials, parts, tools or specialized devices through various programmed motions for the performance of a variety of tasks. The term re-programmable

is closely linked the development of robots to the rapid development of the digital computer and developments in the art and science of computing. A computer is an essential component of a robotic system since it allows running of different robot programs for the various applications. However, the level and sophistication of re-programmability is significantly higher in an industrial robot than that in a computer numerically controlled (CNC) machines. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the growth in the use of industrial robots slowed down significantly, except in Japan. One of the main reasons behind this is the inability of robots to perform tasks that human operators could perform quite easily, such as avoiding obstacles in a workspace, recognizing objects like screws, bolts, or nuts, and adapting and reacting quickly to environment changes. For, most of the industrial robots were essentially blind, deaf, and dumb, and thereby a great deal of effort was made to make robots intelligent by equipping them with sensors and computing resources. Robots then could sense, quickly process data from sensors and interact intelligently with environment. Present-day industrial robots are often equipped with sensors to detect the presence or absence of the object to be manipulated, measure applied forces and moments, and obtain the position and orientation of objects in its environment. Present-day industrial robots also come up with a wide variety of end-effectors, hands, and grippers (which are often equipped with sensing elements) to grasp and manipulate a wide variety of tools and objects. With the advancement in sensing and computing, the modern industrial robot is easier to program and use, more flexible, and more intelligent. 1.1. Chronological Development Related to Robotic Technology Period Mid1700s 1801 1805 1946 1951 1952 Development of Robotics Several human-sized mechanical dolls built that used to play music. A programmable machine for weaving threads or yarn into cloth. Mechanical doll capable of drawing picture. A series of cams were used as the program to guide the device in the process of writing and drawing. Devol (USA) developed a controller device that could record electrical signals magnetically and play them back to operate a mechanical machine. Remote control manipulators for handling radioactive materials. An MIT project used a three-axis milling machine to demonstrate the prototype for NC. (NC: Numerical control involves the control of the actions of a machine tool by means of number). Later Automatically

Programmed Tooling (APT) was developed as part of a programming 1954 1959 1960 1961 1966 1968 1971 1973 1974 1976 1978 1978 1979 1982 1984 language for NC machine tool. A design of programmed article transfer. First commercial robot introduced; limit switches & cams constituted its control operation. First Unimate robot introduced; it was a hydraulic-drive robot. Ford Motor Co installed a Unimate robot in a die casting machine. A Norwegian firm installed a spray-painting robot. Shakey, a mobile robot was developed, which could move about the floor. It was equipped with sensors like vision camera and touch sensors. The Stanford Arm, a small electrically powered robot arm, developed at Stanford University. WAVE, a robot programming language developed at Stanford Research Institute (SRI), followed by AL, another language in 1974. KAWASAKI installed robot operated arc-welding system for motorcycle frames. Remote Center Compliance (RCC) device developed for part insertion in assembly. PUMA robot introduced by General Motors for assembly. T3 robot adapted and programmed to perform drilling and routing operations on aircraft components. Development of SCARA robot for assembly in Japan. IBM introduced RS-1 robot for assembly. It used the robot language AML. Several off-line programming systems demonstrated at the Robots 8 show.

2. Definition of Robots Finally we can define robot in the following way: A robot is a software-controllable mechanical device that uses sensors to guide one or more end-effectors through programmed motions in a workspace in order to manipulate physical objects. Contrary to the profile of a robot, popularised by science fiction literatures, modern day industrial robots are not androids to impersonate humans. In fact, most are not even capable of self-locomotion. Todays robots are anthropomorphic in the sense that they patterned after human arm. That is why, industrial robots are often referred to as robotic arms or, more generally, as robotic manipulators.

3. Robot Classification A. On the basis of use or applications: three categories 1. Hazardous environment for humans to operate in such as handling of fuel and radioactive materials in nuclear plants, in space and underwater operations, in ultraclean rooms of electronic industries, etc.; 2. For tasks that are repetitive, back-breaking and boring for human beings in industries; 3. In manufacturing of products where the number of items is not large or the model is frequently changing. Ease of re-programmability of robots facilitates handling of newer products or models. Some typical areas where robots are or were used: Exploration of Mars was done by mobile robots Sojourner in 1997 and Spirit & Opportunity in 2004, which sent spectacular pictures of Martian landscape for researchers; Retrieval of portions of the Air Indias Kanishka airplane from the ocean depths were done by unmanned submersible robots; A robotic system called Da Vinci has been used for heart surgery, where it is programmed to follow the physicians hand movements very accurately; In entertainment movies like Star Wars and Terminator, robots were extensively used; Sony made robot dog Aibo is popular among children.

B. On the basis of number of degrees of freedom 1. Six-DOF or six-axes robot: arbitrarily positioning and orienting an object or a tool can be achieved by this type of robot; 2. Five-DOF robot: painting and simple welding can be done by a five-axes robots; 3. Four-DOF robot; 4. A five- or a six-DOF robot is often mounted on a three-axes structure, giving rise to an eight- or nine-axes robotic system for larger operating volume or flexibility. C. On the Drive Technologies This is based on the source of power used to drive the joints of the robot. 1. Hydraulic drive; 2. Electric drive. Most robotic manipulators today use electric drives in the form of either DC servomotors or DC stepper motors. However, for high requirements hydraulic-drive robots are preferred. The

drawback for hydraulic-drives is its lack of cleanliness a characteristic that is important for many assembly applications. D. Based on Configuration 1. Cartesian robot; 2. Cylindrical robot; 3. Spherical robot; 4. SCARA robot (Selective Compliance Adaptive Robot Arm); 5. Articulated robot.

Fig.1.3 Cartesian Robot: P-P-P

Fig.1.4 Cylindrical Robot: R-P-P

The gross work envelope of a robot is defined as the locus of points in three-dimensional space that can be reached by the wrist. The axes of the first three joints (pairs) of a robot are said to be the major axes, which are used to determine the position of the wrist. The axes of the remaining joints, the minor axes, are used to establish the orientation of the object hold by the end-effectors. Two basic types of joints or pairs are used in industrial robots: revolute (R) and prismatic (P). (i) Cartesian Robot or a Cartesian-coordinate robot is shown in fig. 1.3. It is a P-P-P robot to move the end-effectors or wrists up and down, in and out, and back and forth. Obviously, work volume generated here is a rectangular box. (ii) Cylindrical Robot or a Cylindrical-coordinate robot is shown in fig. 1.4. If a revolute pair replaces the first joint of a Cartesian-coordinate robot, it becomes a Cylindrical-

coordinate robot or a R-P-P robot. The R-pair swings the arm back and forth about a vertical axis, while the two P-pairs move the wrist up and down along the vertical axis and in and out along a radial axis. Since there will be a minimum radial position, the work envelope is the volume between two vertical concentric cylinders. (iii) Spherical Robot or a Spherical-coordinate robot is shown in fig. 1.5. If a revolute pair replaces the second joint of a Cylindrical-coordinate robot, it becomes a Spherical-coordinate

Fig.1.5 Spherical Robot

Fig.1.6 SCARA Robot

Robot or a R-R-P robot. Here, the first R-pair swings the arm back and forth about a vertical axis, and the second R-pair pitches the arm up and down about a horizontal shoulder, while the P-joint moves the wrist radially in and out. The work envelope here is the volume between two concentric spheres that are typically truncated from above, below, and behind by the limits on the ranges of travel of the joints. (iv) SCARA Robot It is also a R-R-P robot as shown in fig. 1.6. However, its difference with spherical robot is that all its three joint axes are vertical. The first R-pair swings the arm back and forth about a base axis that can be considered as a vertical shoulder axis. The second R-pair swings the forearm back and forth about a vertical elbow axis. So the two R-pairs control the motion in a horizontal plane. The vertical component of the motion is provided by the third joint, which is a P-pair. The shape of a horizontal cross section of the work envelope of a SCARA robot can be quite complex, depending upon the limits on the ranges of travel for the first two axes.

(v) Articulated Robot When the last remaining P-pair is replaced by a R-pair, making it a R-R-R one, an articulated-coordinate robot results in. It is also called a revolute robot. It is the most anthropomorphic configuration, i.e., it most closely resembles the anatomy of a human arm. Here, as shown in fig. 1.7, the first R-pair swings the robot back and forth about a vertical base axis; the second one pitches the arm up and down about a horizontal shoulder axis and the third joint pitches the forearm up and down about a horizontal elbow axis.

Fig. 1.7 Articulated Robot: R-R-R robot E. Based on Motion Control Methods Two methods are used to control the movement of the end-effectors 1. Point to point method: Here the end-effectors move to a sequence of discrete points in the workspace. The user does not explicitly control the path between the points. Pointto-point motion is useful for operations, which are discrete in nature. Uses: spot welding for which point-to-point motion of the tool is all that is required. 2. Continuous path motion: Here the end-effectors must follow a prescribed path in three-dimensional space. Uses: paint spraying, arc welding, or application of glue and sealant.

3 4

Fig. 1.7.1. SCARA Robot Articulated Robot: R-R-R robot 4. Technology of Robots A typical robot consists of Mechanical components; Actuators; Power transmission devices; Sensors; Electronic controller; etc. Computers;

Mechanical components Main mechanical components of a robot are links connected by pairs. Links are assumed to be rigid and are metallic made of steel or aluminium. They should be of lightweight so that torque requirements from an actuator are low. Also they should have high rigidity to achieve positioning accuracy. In a serial manipulator, the links are arranged sequentially, starting from the base and ending in the end-effectors with no loops. In a parallel manipulator, on the other hand, there can be one or more loops. Actuators The links are moved by actuators, which are electric motors or pneumatic and hydraulic cylinders. Electric motors can be DC or AC servomotors, or sometimes stepper motors. The

motors required for robots should have ideally a low rpm (of less than 100), be lightweight and have high torque. Power transmission devices Most lightweight DC servomotors, however, run at high speed of 3000 rpm or more and suitable arrangement has to be made to bring down the speed. Standard spur gears or chains or sprockets or belts are not used for speed reduction since the accuracy is lost due to backlash or slippage. Instead special low-backlash gear sets are used for power transmission. Sensors Most robots have sensors at joints, which measure rotation or translation at joints for feedback control. Optical encoders measure the angular rotation at a joint, and the angular velocities can be measured by LVDT (Linear Variable Differential Transformer) and video cameras. Force at the end-effectors or at the links can be accurately measured by force-torque sensors, which use strain gauges. Electronic Controller Most controllers are implemented digitally using microprocessors and contain circuitry for analog to digital (A/D) and digital to analog (D/A) conversions, memory etc. Computers Two of the most important components in a robotic system are the computers and the software or the programs residing in them. Often there are two kinds of computers: one set for controlling the actuators and the other is a supervisory or a master computer where application programs can be developed and stored, or fault detection, diagnosis, and corrective actions can be taken. An industrial robot is a complex and expensive machine. It is important to provide a userfriendly operator interface so that the robot operator can easily use it. 6. Robot Specifications While the drive technologies, work-envelope geometries, and motion control methods provide convenient ways to broadly classify robots, there are a number of additional characteristics that allow the user to further specify robotic manipulators. Following are some more characteristics:

Table 1 Robot Characteristics Characteristics Number of axes Load carrying capacity Maximum speed, cycle time Reach and stroke Tool orientation Repeatability Precision and accuracy Operating environment Units ----kg mm/sec mm deg mm mm -----

6.1. Number of Axes First three axes are the major axes used to establish the position of the wrist, while the remaining axes are used to establish the orientation of the tool or gripper. Six-axis robot is a general manipulator in the sense that it can move its tool or hand to both an arbitrary position and an arbitrary orientation in the workspace. The mechanism for opening and closing the fingers or otherwise activating the tool is not regarded as an independent axis, and they are called redundant axes. These axes are used to overcome obstacles. Axes of Robotic Manipulator Axes 1-3 4-6 7-n 6.1.1. Tool Orientation While the three major axes determine the shape of the work envelope, the remaining axes determine the kinds of orientation that the tool or hand can assume. If three independent minor axes are available along with three major axes, any arbitrary orientation of the tool can be obtained in a three dimensional workspace. The tool orientation is normally yaw-pitch-roll (YPR) system. Type Major Minor Redundant Function Position the wrist Orient the tool Avoid obstacles

Roll f3, m3

Pitch f2, m2

Yaw f1, m1 Fig. 1.9 Yaw, Pitch & Roll of Tool

To specify the tool orientation, a mobile tool coordinate frame M = {m1, m2, m3} is attached to the tool and moves with the tool (fig. 1.9). Here, m3 is aligned with the principal axis of the tool and points away from the wrist. Next m2 is parallel to the line followed by the fingertips of the tool as it opens and closes. Finally m1 completes right-handed tool coordinate system. F = {f1, f2, f3} is the fixed wrist coordinate frame attached at the end of the forearm. Yaw motion is performed by pitch motion by rotating the tool about wrist axis f 2, and finally the

roll by rotating the tool about wrist axis f3. Positive angles correspond to CCW rotations looking along the axis back to the origin. The alternative way of specifying YPR is to perform the rotations in reverse order about the axes of the mobile tool frame M rather than the fixed wrist frame F. That is, first roll motion about m3, then pitch about m2, and finally yaw about m1. The result will be equivalent to the earlier YPR order. That is why the YPR system is sometimes called RPY system. The RPY is easier to visualize, particularly when the angles of rotation are not multiples of /2. 6.2. Load Carrying Capacity The load carrying capacity of a robot depends on its size, configuration, construction, and drive system. Robots arm is the weakest position particularly when the arm is at maximum extension. Just as in the case of a human being, it is more difficult to lift a heavy load with arms fully extended than when the arms are held in close to the body. The load carrying capacity varies greatly between robots from 2.2 kg to about 5000 kg. The Minimover 5 Microbot, an educational tabletop robot has a load carrying capacity of 2.2 kg while that of the GCA-XR6, an industrial robot is 4928 kg. This weight is the gross weight, i.e., the weight of the end effector and the load that it caries. If the rated load capacity is of 10 kg (say) and the weight of the end effector is 4 kg, then the net weight carrying capacity is 6 kg. 6.3. Speed of Motion The speed of a robot is defined by the cycle time, which is the time required to perform a periodic motion. It is more meaningful than the maximum tool-tip speed. The maximum tooltip speed may vary from 92 mm/sec (for a Westinghouse series 4000 robot) to 9000 mm/sec (for Adept One SCARA robot). The cycle time vis--vis maximum speed can be realized from the following fact: The Adept One SCARA robot carrying a payload of 2.2 kg along a 700-mm path consisting of 6 straight line segments has a cycle time of 0.9 sec with an average speed over a cycle of 778 mm/sec as against the maximum tool-tip speed of 9000 mm/sec. It may be mentioned that the hydraulic robot is faster than electric drive robots. It is generally desirable that the cycle time should be small. Determination of the most desirable speed, in addition to merely minimizing the cycle-time, depends on the following factors: The accuracy with which the end effector must be positioned;

The weight of the payload; The distances to be moved.

The accuracy is inversely proportional to the speed of robots since with the increase of accuracy, it needs more time to reduce the location errors for achieving the desired final position. Also, heavier the payload, greater is the inertia and momentum with a consequent slow operational speed of robot. Moreover, because of acceleration and retardation effects, a robot takes less time for a long distance than for a sequence of short distance whose sum is equal to the long distance. The influence of distance is illustrated in fig. 1.8.

Speed at Wrist End

Maximum speed capability of robot Speed lower than programmed operating speed Short move Long move Time /distance Fig. 1.8 Influence of distance versus speed

6.4. Reach & Stroke The reach and stroke of a robotic manipulator are rough measures of the size of the work envelope. The horizontal reach is the maximum radial distance that the wrist can be positioned from the vertical axis about which it rotates. The horizontal stroke represents the total radial distance that the wrist can travel. Thus the horizontal reach minus the horizontal stroke represents the minimum radial distance the wrist can be positioned from the base axis.

Fig. 1.8 Reach and Stroke of a Cylindrical Robot The vertical reach is the maximum elevation above the work surface that the wrist can reach. Similarly the vertical stroke is the total vertical distance that the wrist can travel.