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01-12-2020 | Original Article | Issue 1/2020 Open Access

Chinese Journal of Mechanical Engineering 1/2020

Design of Self-Reconfigurable Multiarm Robot Mechanism Based on Deployable Kinematic Chains

Chinese Journal of Mechanical Engineering > Issue 1/2020
Fu-Qun Zhao, Sheng Guo, Hai-Jun Su, Hai-Bo Qu, Ya-Qiong Chen


As the structures of multiarm robots are serially arranged, the packaging and transportation of these robots are often inconvenient. The ability of these robots to operate objects must also be improved. Addressing this issue, this paper presents a type of multiarm robot that can be adequately folded into a designed area. The robot can achieve different operation modes by combining different arms and objects. First, deployable kinematic chains (DKCs) are designed, which can be folded into a designated area and be used as an arm structure in the multiarm robot mechanism. The strategy of a platform for storing DKCs is proposed. Based on the restrictions in the storage area and the characteristics of parallel mechanisms, a class of DKCs, called base assembly library, is obtained. Subsequently, an assembly method for the synthesis of the multiarm robot mechanism is proposed, which can be formed by the connection of a multiarm robot mechanism with an operation object based on a parallel mechanism structure. The formed parallel mechanism can achieve a reconfigurable characteristic when different DKCs connect to the operation object. Using this method, two types of multiarm robot mechanisms with four DKCs that can switch operation modes to perform different tasks through autonomous combination and release operation is proposed. The obtained mechanisms have observable advantages when compared with the traditional mechanisms, including optimizing the occupied volume during transportation and using parallel mechanism theory to analyze the switching of operation modes.
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