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Labs ■ Continuum Robotics

Continuum Robotics

Continuum robotics is an emerging field.  A continuum robot is a continuously curving manipulator, similarly to the arm of an octopus. Differently from robots with rigid link a continuum robot has virtually infinite number of degrees of freedom, thus posing high challenges for designing, manufacturing,  modeling and control.

Rigid linked robots can successfully perform a variety of tasks in industrial automation processes. In operative conditions where there is a need for highly dexterous and soft yet reliable devices, robots with a stiff structure are insufficient to satisfy these needs. This has lead to the development of continuum or hyper-redundant robots.

Potential applications of such robots span from people rescuing in narrow or hostile environments, to medical applications in minimally invasive surgery. Differently from robots having rigid links, in continuum robots the manipulation load is not necessarily placed at the end-effector, but due to their structure, whole-arm manipulation is possible.

Currently the main project is the EU project OCTOPUS. The project aims at investigating and understanding the principles that give rise to the octopus sensory-motor capabilities and at incorporating them in new design approaches and technologies for building physically embodied, soft-bodied, hyper-redundant, dextrous prototype.

Last Updated on Monday, 24 December 2012 11:57

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