Design and development of a novel anthropomorphic finger with pneumatic tactile sensing
Levins, Matthew D.
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The human hand is a tool that we rely on to conduct a vast variety of tasks, from cracking eggs to lifting boxes. Meanwhile, in an industrial setting, different tools are needed to complete specific tasks. Picking up a box may require parallel grippers, while grabbing an egg may need suction cups. Having one tool to accomplish both jobs saves time and money for tooling changes when a new product is manufactured. Hence, the need for anthropomorphic (human-like) grippers has risen over time. This work outlines the creation of an anthropomorphic finger and pneumatic tactile sensor. This underactuated and compliant finger design is optimal for an industrial or collaborative environment, while the pneumatic sensor is proven to be sensitive and accurate for tactile feedback of grasped objects. This feedback consists of force measurement and slip detection, which is required for efficient object manipulation.