University of Twente Student Theses


A step in the right direction : modelling and analysis of a robotic leg with an energy storage system

Grinten, B. van der (2013) A step in the right direction : modelling and analysis of a robotic leg with an energy storage system.

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Abstract:Dike monitoring is currently done via a labour intensive network of trained people. The recent unforeseen floods in Stein en Wilnis support the statement that the current monitoring system is not flawless. The goal of project RObotic SEnsor (ROSE) is to develop a team of walking robotic sensors that will autonomously inspect dikes. An energy storage system has been designed in order to increase the energy efficiency of the robot. Energy (such as impact energy) is stored in a rotational spring above the robotic leg. There are two actuation beams, which can reconfigure, attached to the spring. It has been researched to what extent this system can behave as an actuator and what the limitations are. The energy storage configuration has been analytically modelled using a method based on Lagrange's theorem applied to a multi-body variational method based on virtual work and generalised force. The model has been numerically checked. One of the main conclusions was that the system has its limitations. In order to let the robot travel along a chosen trajectory, continuous reconfiguration of the actuation beams is necessary. Not all trajectories can be travelled, limitations for the available paths of the leg are due to both the maximum elongation of the actuation beams, and the chosen restriction of adding energy to the system during reconfiguration. Furthermore, it is concluded that in order for the system to be useful in both stance and swing period, the payload of the leg should be relatively close to the mass of the leg itself. Despite the limitations mentioned before, it is expected that the designed system will create an energetic advantage. This advantage is expected because it is not necessary to use stored energy in any direction. Other actuators, which are necessary in the real world to account for friction losses, could be used only to actuate in the directions which are not possible with continuous reconfiguration.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:53 electrotechnology
Programme:Electrical Engineering MSc (60353)
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