Design and development of a universal gripper mechanism and development of an omni-directional unmanned aerial vehicle for autonomous perching
MetadataShow full item record
A novel omni-directional multi-rotor prototype with an attached gripper mechanism named the OmniRaptor is presented with the capability of landing on inclined members in a controlled, stable manner to perform construction and maintenance tasks on industrial structures such as high-voltage transmission towers. The OmniRaptor utilizes orthogonal variable-pitch side rotors placed perpendicular to a main quadcopter section allowing for arbitrary control of position and attitude, which is not possible with a standard multi-rotor. A gripper based on robotic hands is designed, optimized, and developed with the capabilities of grasping long slender beams with an unknown cross-section. The gripper replaces the landing gear on a normal multirotor also allowing the OmniRaptor to land on at surfaces. The results of test flights are presented demonstrating autonomous take-off, flying, and controlled landing with secure grasping for both a level and an inclined beam, something not possible for a traditional multi-rotor layout.