--Might want to keep an eye on the Tetsujin contest held by Servo
magazine. I suspect that what's happening in the USA is probably a pale
shadow of what's been accomplished in Japan and other countries though..
"Steamboat Ed" Haas : Yet another genius
Hacking the Trailing Edge! : without a job...
There seems to be a lot of research going on in this area (exoskeletons)
lately, especially for military applications, but almost all of it involves
full body exoskeletons, not a single arm. (Obviously, a single arm will
require the user's body to support not only the weight of their own arm and
the exoskeleton arm, but also any load that is picked up, making a single
arm design VERY limited in it's applications.) Personally, the only real use
I can think of for a single arm design would be for medical/physical therapy
RoboNexus had their Tetsujin 2004 contest Oct 21-23 in Santa Clara, CA.
Tetsujin is an exoskeleton weight lifting contest. Servo Magazine had a 2
page article in their December 2004 issue about it which might be helpful to
you. It had a lot of pictures as well as the names of the people who made
Here is the reason I want something like this:
Really, any robot arm could work if it had the right features, but
these wearable robots seem to be the closest so far...
I want a user to be able to grab the hand of the robot arm, and move it
with ease to a location. While it is moved, I wish to keep track of
the trajectory taken, and then have the robot repeat the motion on its
own at a later time.
The hard part is finding a robot arm that will allow someone to move it
manually (i.e. using physical force, not a pendant or a computer
program). So far, these wearable arms seem to be the only ones that
can do that...
I'd like to see what the failsafe is in these things... have you ever seen a
manipulator do a "hard over" when the feedback fails?
While you can trash your work area with the "hard over" it's a different
game when your attached to the manipulator and in the line of attack!
Regardless of the physical stops built into a system I don't think I'd be
keen to attach myself to these things.
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