Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

Geared rod-driven continuum robot with woodpecker-inspired extension mechanism and IMU-based force sensing

Mavinkurve, Ujjal, Kanada, Ayato, Tafrishi, Seyed Amir ORCID:, Honda, Koki, Nakashima, Yasutaka and Yamamoto, Motoji 2024. Geared rod-driven continuum robot with woodpecker-inspired extension mechanism and IMU-based force sensing. IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters 9 (1) , pp. 135-142. 10.1109/LRA.2023.3331650

[thumbnail of MS_Ujjal_RAL.pdf]
PDF - Accepted Post-Print Version
Download (5MB) | Preview


Continuum robot arms that can access confined spaces are useful in many applications, such as invasive surgery, search and rescue, and inspection. However, their reach is often limited because their extension mechanism relies on elastic deformation or folding structures. To address this challenge, we propose a continuum robot with a novel extension mechanism inspired by the impressive ability of woodpeckers to extend and bend their long tongues to catch insects in tree holes. The proposed mechanism can change the effective length of the robot from almost zero to any length by moving the robot's body back and forth. Our prototype robot demonstrated a maximum extension of 450 mm and a minimum bending radius of 125 mm. In addition, we developed a Gaussian process regression model to predict an external force applied to the robot's tip using inertial measurement units. This enabled us to determine the magnitude and direction of the force with an error rate of 4.8 percent and 11.1 percent, even when the robot's length was varied between the training and test data. The unrestricted extension capability of the proposed approach has the potential to increase the application prospects of continuum robots.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Engineering
Publisher: Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
ISSN: 2377-3766
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 15 November 2023
Date of Acceptance: 7 November 2023
Last Modified: 18 Dec 2023 13:02

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics