Humanoid robots are being created to replace humans in dangerous situations, assist overworked humans, and improve our quality of life by completing chores. However, current bipedal robots haven’t matched the performance of humans and are still impractical for commercial use.
One of the Agile and Adaptive Robotics Lab’s goals is to create a humanoid robot whose anatomy is similar to the human body. If this can be accomplished, we can have a functioning model of the human body that we can adjust to improve both humanoid robots’ functions and the functionality of our own human bodies. This specific project looks at the creation of the bipedal robot’s 3D printed foot. The main barriers that are faced during the creation of this type of bipedal robot is the smooth substitution of natural body parts (such as self repairing muscles or complex joints) with human-made parts. Each replacement piece does not match the design of the human parts and further adjustments have to be made to maintain the robot’s human-like movements.
Our ankle/foot design matches the basic anatomy of the human foot and ankle. We separated the foot and ankle into multiple 3D printed pieces at each joint and integrated sleeves, slides, and locks into each design’s part to hold the whole foot together. This design separates itself from other robotic foot/ankle designs by matching the exact range of motion for the human body, providing cushioning through the arch as the robot walks, and is 100% made out of 3D printed parts.
Fitzgerald, Tylise E., "Creating a 3D Printed Bipedal Robot’s Ankle and Foot With Human-Like Motion" (2019). Undergraduate Research & Mentoring Program. 36.