Grasp Stability with a Robotic Exoskelton Glove

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Virginia Tech


Grasp stability was studied and researched upon by various research groups, but mainly focused on robotic grippers by devising conditions for a stable grasp. Maintaining grasp stability is important so as to reduce the chances of the object slipping and dropping. But there was little focus on the grasp stability of robotic exoskeleton gloves and most of the research was focused on mechanical design. A robotic exoskeleton glove was developed as well as novel methods to improve the grasp stability. The exoskeleton glove developed is intended for patients who have suffered paralysis of the hand due to stroke or other factors. The robotic glove aids them in grasping objects as part of daily life activities. The glove is constructed with rigidly coupled 4-bar linkages attached to the finger tips. Each linkage mechanism has 1- Degree of Freedom (DOF) and is actuated by a linear Series Elastic Actuator (SEA). Two methods were developed to satisfy two of the conditions required for a stable grasp. These include deformation prevention of soft objects, and maintaining force and moment equilibrium of the objects being grasped. Simulations were performed to validate the performance of the algorithms. A battery of experiments was performed on the integrated prototype in order to validate the performance of the algorithms developed.



Exoskeleton, Mechatronics, Grasping, Mechanism, Series Elastic Actuation