The way to simplicity: Self adaptive mechanisms for robots
series DFKI Documents, volume 15-02, pages 11, Jun/2015. DFKI GmbH.
Mobile robots have to deal with complex tasks in real world environments. A lot of information about this
environment is required to handle this complexity and to act or react adequate. This information has to be
processed to make decisions and therefore a high computing capacity is required. Self adaptive mechanical
mechanisms have the potential to reduce the computing complexity by adapting inherently to a given task.
This adaptation could be reached with different mechatronic or mechanical approaches. Two examples of
such self adaptive mechanical mechanisms are presented in this talk. A self adaptive foot designed for the
multi legged robot MANTIS and a self adaptive gripper designed for the COMPI manipulator. The self
adaptive foot is basically a walking surface with a ball joint. These ball joint rotates around a virtual centre
of rotation which is located below the surface on which the robot is walking. This self adaptive foot thereby
always orientates itself with the walking surface towards the ground. The self adaptive Gripper is designed to
adapt for two different base types of objects, cylindrical objects and prismatic objects with parallel surfaces.