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Saugat Sthapit

This project presents the mechanisms of Robotic Arm which is used to lift objects and unload
them. These kinds of robots are basically used in factories. We can use computer software that can
calculate the finite element of linear stress of each components of the Robotic Arm while doing
this project. Furthermore, in this project, we have used aluminium as a material. In addition, we
selected components on the basis of inverse and forward kinematics of the Robotic Arm
movement. We designed Robotic Arm in such a way that when force is exerted, mechanical
components will not be broken. We used previous researches, findings and theories made on
Robotic Arm and its mechanisms to have clear concept about designing and modifying it.
Automated guided conveyors (AGC) are used in many places for e.g. in manufacturing plants,
distribution centers as it moves and carries items/objects from one place to another. Various new
technologies and robots have already been introduced in the market, however, use of AGC for
handling packages and transporting materials in a timely manner is the main reason because of
which use of AGC is very popular. These kinds of robots are essential to the factories where less
investment can return high profits due its high efficiency.
This project involves designing of Robotic Arm used in AGC. Characteristics of Robotic Arm
designing slightly resembles with the Vacuum Sucking Unit in which the paths that device follows
is controlled through computer.
While performing this project, these are the problems that might be encountered: size, material
selection, torque and motor rpm. These all affect the mechanisms of the Robotic Arm from one
way or the other.
Our Objective
The main objective of this project is to design a Robotic Arm having the mechanisms that can load
and unload the items from one place to another.

Proposed Robotic Arm Design

There are several factors that can affect the design/model of the Robotic Arm which include:
mechanical parts, electrical components (sensors), computer programming, artificial technologies
and so on. The mechanical components that can be used are grippers and the body of the robots
whereas the electrical components can be micro-controller, servo controller, voltage regulator and
sensors. Grippers and the body of the robot must be designed as accurately as possible. Simple
mistakes in calculation can cause problems when robot starts moving and therefore the objectives
cannot be fulfilled. Grippers should be lightweight and the body of the robot must be able to
support the weight of the object to be lifted. Electrical components like micro-controllers and
sensors must be chosen wisely to make sure that they perform perfectly.
We can use gripper - an end effector and a computer controlled device - because of its capability to
hold an object, increment in efficiency level, and it is human friendly. However, its performance
entirely depends upon the friction, speed, and weight of the object to be lifted.
Servo controller is responsible to send pulse to the servo motors. It generally has in-built program
and thus can be controlled by computers.
Another device that we can use is servo motor. For this project, while selecting motors, we should
consider the power needed, weight, arm-link length of the Robotic Arm. In this project, we can use
Radio Control or RC servo because it has the ability to position itself as per the instruction carried
through the pulse. Using RC servo is advantageous as we can measure output gear through
potentiometer, control motor to move the output gear to desired location. Because of these
reasons, we can find this low-cost, compact RC servo a great actuator in this project.
We can use aluminium for designing mechanical parts because aluminium is strong and light
material compared to other materials. Furthermore, aluminium is difficult to break, easy to find
and cheap.
To make sure that the loading and unloading mechanism can lift and move the load, we should
consider about the Robotic Arm link length. That is, we must select its suitable length and size to
make it moveable. The Robotic Arm is directly linked with the degree of freedom angle, the arm
link and the angle itself. Therefore, we should consider the configuration of the Robotic Arm first.
Furthermore, the motors used for the Robotic Arm must achieve the required motor torque.
We can use CAD computer software called Solid Works to draw this model. We chose Solid
Works because of its convenience to sketch ideas for the design as it is in 3D, and can simulate
with features and dimensions and produce a final model.
Some of the steps that need to be followed are sketching the designs, dimensions, selecting the
appropriate features and selecting the components that best mates with the drawing/design.

Detail Procedures
We must sketch mechanical components which include simple arm link, base and servo motor
holder. The design must achieve required dimensions to function properly so dimensions required
must be taken into consideration to get it matched with the torque of servo motor.
Examples of sketches are shown below:

Dimensions required for servo holder

Dimensions of arm joint

Based on this above figure, we can assume that base is located at x=0 and y=0 so we must first find
out the location of x and y. Forward kinematics involves solving of position and orientation of the
end effectors of the Robotic Arm if we are given the values for link lengths and joint angles.
The main purpose of analysis is to conclude the information about displacement and stress caused
by loads during normal operating conditions. We can use computer software named ALGOR to
analyze the linear static stress. After making analysis, we can get into the conclusion whether the
material used (aluminium) is strong enough to load the objects. In this section, we will discuss
about various parameters like translation limitation, robot workspace, force calculations, forward
kinematics, velocity, sensors and so on.
Translation limitation is a joint from which the arm can rotate or bend. The translation limitation
value can be identified by the actuators used in the Robotic Arm. Each degree requires exponential
algorithm calculation, encoder and a motor.
Forward kinematics is the way to determine the position of the end effectors if we have the values
for link lengths and joint angles.
Force calculation must be done to select the suitable motor for the joints as it helps to support an
entire weight of a Robotic Arm and object that is loaded.
Robot workspace is the area covered by the robotic hand. This mainly depends upon the
translation limitations, arm link lengths and the angle in which the object will be loaded.
As our design heavily relies on the results of these parameters, analysis of the mechanism of
Robotic Arm is an important part for the successful project completion.
Parts that need to get assembled have different dimensions and usage, so we must make sure
about the processing of fabricating parts. For the movement, gripper - object to load and unload
the items - must be assembled with RC servo using coupling. Suitable lifting mechanism must be
determined because it functions as an actuator to lift objects whereas gripper functions as a holder.
Many servos are controlled by servo controllers, and servo controllers can be microcontroller or
computer itself. These micro-controllers functions as the operating system to control all the servos
by using the software given by the manufacturer.
To build the Robotic Arm, all these procedures are important and must be followed; however,
new changes can be brought in. The most important benefits from this project is
- Because of load and unload mechanism, materials will be easily handled.

My mother, Roshani Bade, for her valuable suggestions, advices, knowledge from her years of
experiences and encouraging me to design this project on Robotic Arm.

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Mikell P Groover, Industrial roboticstechnology,programming and applications,Mc Graw Hill.
J. Hallam "Autonomous robots: from dream to reality", Proceedings from \'Robotikdagar, 1991

Figues University Malaysia Pahang