The Agile and Adaptive Robotics Lab aims to uncover the biological and physiological complexities in animal agility and adaptive control, which can be replicated through robotics and provide further applications in biology and medicine. One project within the lab focuses on understanding structure, actuation, and control through the modeling of a canine quadruped robot.
The AARL has developed a full-body quadruped robot with artificial muscles that control limb movement and a body that is built from 3D-printed parts. This specific project involved modification of these existing parts to (a) minimize deflections in the front legs, causing unwanted lateral and abduction/adduction movement; (b) develop methods to replace potentiometers with new encoders, and (c) adjust proportions of the robot to match those reported from existing dog data. Notable developments include a hinge-joint mechanism that was integrated into the top of the legs to offer support against the abduction/adduction motion, while a universal “slab” part was designed to mount encoders around the robot and accommodate encoder assembly restrictions. An Excel sheet was created to aid in quickly calculating necessary segment lengths of the robot’s legs based on proportional data, and some user input parameters.
This work will be utilized in the printing, assembly, and testing of the parts created above to see if their intended purposes are achieved, as the testing of these parts was stagnated due to a global pandemic. The quadruped will continue to develop into a fully-functional robot, capable of replicating the locomotion and adaptive responses of a real canine.
Collins, Jasmin S., "3D-Printed Leg Design and Modification for Improved Support on a Quadruped Robot" (2020). Undergraduate Research & Mentoring Program. 42.