Hydraulic robot design and control?
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    Mar 2010
    California USA
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    Default Hydraulic robot design and control?

    For a research project I'm developing a non-magnetic low profile robotic arm. My design is to use hydraulics to transmit power into the restricted area and then switch to an antagonistic cable drive. I have zero experience working with hydraulics, I was looking into finding non-magnetic cylinders and having some challenges. Does anyone have suggestions for sources? For a first prototype I was considering using two single acting pneumatic cylinders and replacing steel parts with brass.

    For driving I was planning on using ballscrew linear actuators to push/pull on a single acting hydraulic cylinder connected on the other end to another cylinders, my pressures are very low and the drive tube should not collapse. I can place linear encoders on the output side, however they will not be able to function at certain times due to very strong AC magnetic fields (the electronics will not be damaged). I am worried about leakage of the fluid and loss of position.

    Is it feasible to drive the output side in openloop configuration? I am right now finishing up my 8 axis motor controller, its right now just running a PID controller on the motor encoders position on the FPGA, with cable tension and and joint angle being controlled at a higher level on the hard processor system using more encoders and load cells / external server through vision.

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