Fully Printable Low-Cost Dexterous Soft Robotic Manipulators for AgricultureDownload PDF

Published: 23 May 2023, Last Modified: 23 May 2023AIAFS 2022Readers: Everyone
Keywords: Agricultural Robotics, Soft Robotic Design and Fabrication, Dexterous End-Effectors
Abstract: Further automation of agricultural tasks will require the development of new dexterous end-effectors that are capable of directly interacting with soil and vegetation alongside human workers. Soft robotic end-effectors are poised to provide feasible low-cost solutions, but their design and fabrication process is still time-consuming, difficult, and not well established. In this work, we present an approach that utilizes novel low-cost fabrication techniques in conjunction with design tools helping soft hand designers to systematically take advantage of multi-material 3D printing to create dexterous soft robotic end-effectors. While very low-cost and lightweight, we show that generated designs are highly durable, surprisingly strong, and capable of dexterous grasping, making the technology an ideal candidate for real-world agricultural applications.
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