Goldman, Daniel I.

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Design of a Bio-inspired Dynamical Vertical Climbing Robot

2008 , Clark, Jonathan E. , Goldman, Daniel I. , Lin, Pei-Chun , Lynch, Goran , Chen, Tao S. , Komsuoglu, Haldun , Full, Robert J. , Koditschek, Daniel E.

This paper reviews a template for dynamical climbing originating in biology, explores its stability properties in a numerical model, and presents emperical data from a physical prototype as evidence of the feasibility of adapting the dynamics of the template to robot that runs vertically upward. The recently proposed pendulous climbing model abstracts remarkable similarities in dynamic wall scaling behavior exhibited by radically different animal species. The present paper’s first contribution summarizes a numerical study of this model to hypothesize that these animals’ apparently wasteful commitments to lateral oscillations may be justified by a significant gain in the dynamical stability and, hence, the robustness of their resulting climbing capability. The paper’s second contribution documents the design and offers preliminary empirical data arising from a physical instantiation of this model. Notwithstanding the substantial differences between the proposed bio-inspired template and this physical manifestation, initial data suggest the mechanical climber may be capable of reproducing both the motions and ground reaction forces characteristic of dynamical climbing animals. Even without proper tuning, the robot’s steady state trajectories manifest a substantial exchange of kinetic and potential energy, resulting in vertical speeds of 0.30 m/s (0.75 bl/s) and claiming its place as the first bio-inspired dynamical legged climbing platform.

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Robotics in Scansorial Environments

2005 , Autumn, Kellar , Buehler, Martin , Cutkosky, Mark , Fearing, Ronald S. , Full, Robert J. , Goldman, Daniel I. , Groff, Richard , Provancher, William , Rizzi, Alfred E. , Saranli, Uluc , Saunders, Aaron , Koditschek, Daniel E.

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Toward a dynamic climbing robot

2006 , Clark, Jonathan E. , Goldman, Daniel I. , Chen, Tao S. , Full, Robert J. , Koditschek, Daniel E.

Simple mathematical models or ‘templates’ of locomotion have been effective tools in understanding how animals move and have inspired and guided the design of robots that emulate those behaviors. This paper describes a recently proposed biologically-based template for dynamic vertical climbing, and evaluates the feasibility of adapting it to build a vertical ‘running’ robot. We present the results a simulation study suggesting that appropriate mechanical and control alterations to the template result in fast stable climbing that preserves the characteristic body motions and foot forces found in the template model and in animals. These design changes should also allow the robot to operate with commercially available actuators and in the same power to weight range as other running and climbing robots.

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The RiSE Climbing Robot: Body and Leg Design

2006 , Saunders, Aaron , Goldman, Daniel I. , Full, Robert J. , Buehler, Martin

The RiSE robot is a biologically inspired, six legged climbing robot, designed for general mobility in scansorial (vertical walls, horizontal ledges, ground level) environments. It exhibits ground reaction forces that are similar to animal climbers and does not rely on suction, magnets or other surface-dependent specializations to achieve adhesion and shear force. We describe RiSE’s body and leg design as well as its electromechanical, communications and computational infrastructure. We review design iterations that enable RiSE to climb 90o carpeted, cork covered and (a growing range of) stucco surfaces in the quasi-static regime.