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Development of tethered autonomous mobile robot systems for field works

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This paper describes the implementation details, advantages and potential applications of autonomous tethered mobile robot systems using the 'hyper-tether' concept. Hyper-tether is a new research area on tethered connections, which provide tethering among different mobile robot types, such as a robot with the environment and a robot with humans and animals. Its basic function is to actively control the tether's tension and/or length, but it also considers tether launching, anchoring, power delivery, data communication cabling and built-in trajectory command generation capabilities. Many of these features can be efficiently applied to build a tethered mobile robot system which remotely manipulates a working tool that can be useful for land-mine detection and removal, trimming of gardens and grass cutting of wide areas (e.g. golf courses, soccer and baseball fields), spraying of agricultural chemicals, forestry and construction works, etc. In this paper, a simple prototype of hypertether's winch-tether pair and a working tool equipped with a grass cutter was constructed, and basic experiments were performed to demonstrate the validity of the proposed system.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 2-12-1 Ookayama, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8552, Japan 2: Nagoya Aerospace Systemms, F-2 Shop, Komaki South Production Departmen, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, 1 Toyoba, Toyoyama-Cho, Nishikasugai-Gun, Aichi 480-0293, Japan

Publication date: 2001-07-01

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