Modelling and Motion Control of Soft Robots

A special issue of Actuators (ISSN 2076-0825). This special issue belongs to the section "Actuators for Robotics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 August 2024 | Viewed by 1644

Special Issue Editors

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Bath, Bath BA2 7AY, UK
Interests: fluid power; digital hydraulics; motion control; soft actuators; soft robotics
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Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Bath, Bath BA2 7AY, UK
Interests: system integration; characterisation and identification; motion control; energy harvesting; soft robotics

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Soft robots and devices exploit deformable materials that can change their shape to allow conformable physical contact for controlled manipulation. The modelling and control of soft robots have been continuously attracting research interest, driven by a desire to create intelligent, controllable, and robust soft actuators and robots for applications in a variety of sectors, including manufacturing, healthcare, defence, nuclear, exploration, space, etc. The design, modelling, and control of soft actuators and robots are ongoing areas of research.

In this context, we are delighted to announce a new Special Issue, entitled “Modelling and Motion Control of Soft Robots”, which will address significant and emerging developments in the modelling and control of soft actuators and robots, and their applications. This Special Issue will collect a coherent ensemble of original and inspiring articles, communications, and reviews emphasizing the following topics:

  • New modelling methodologies for soft actuators and robots;
  • Dynamic modelling of soft robots;
  • Modelling and analysis of soft robots;
  • Control of soft actuators and robots;
  • Motion control of soft robotic systems;
  • AI in modelling and control of soft robots;
  • Demonstrations and applications.

Dr. Min Pan
Dr. Runan Zhang
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Actuators is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • soft actuators
  • smart actuators
  • soft robots
  • controllable robots
  • control algorithms
  • modelling
  • motion control
  • AI in soft robots

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

14 pages, 4749 KiB  
Article
Soft End Effector Using Spring Roll Dielectric Elastomer Actuators
by Hamish Lewis and Min Pan
Actuators 2023, 12(11), 412; https://doi.org/10.3390/act12110412 - 04 Nov 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1220
Abstract
Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) offer robust, high-energy-density solutions for soft robotics. The proposed end effector consists of three spring roll configuration DEAs, each acting as a robotic finger, using a 3M VHB-F9473PC adhesive membrane. Spring roll DEAs can be designed to achieve highly [...] Read more.
Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) offer robust, high-energy-density solutions for soft robotics. The proposed end effector consists of three spring roll configuration DEAs, each acting as a robotic finger, using a 3M VHB-F9473PC adhesive membrane. Spring roll DEAs can be designed to achieve highly specialised actuations depending on the electrode patterning and structural supports. This allows a spring roll DEA-based soft end effector to be tailor-made by simply altering the electrode patterning. The lateral force, bending angle and response time of the actuator are measured experimentally and compared with the predictions of an analytical model. The cylindrical actuator measures 70 mm in length and 15 mm in diameter and achieves a lateral force of 30 mN, a bending angle of 6.8° and a response time of 1 s. Spring roll configuration DEAs are shown to reduce the effects of viscoelasticity seen in the membrane, making the actuator more controllable at higher voltages. The dielectric constant of the membrane is shown to be a limiting factor of actuation, with a decrease in dielectric constant resulting in larger actuation. The end effector successfully grips numerous light objects for extended periods, showing the applicability of spring roll DEAs for soft end effectors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Modelling and Motion Control of Soft Robots)
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