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Modelling Flexible Manipulators With Motors at the Joints

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A computationally efficient recursive model of a flexible manipulator with motors at the joints is described in this paper. The model adopts a mixed Eulerian and Lagrangian formulation of the equations of a flexible body and exploits the chained structure of the equations for a serial manipulator. The dynamic effects of the motors at the joints, including gyroscopic terms, are fully taken into account. Symbolic manipulation is used in a newly developed package, whose performance in detailed reproduction of the dynamic effects due to the interplay between the motors and the flexible links is assessed through simulation. A comparison between the complete model and a simplified one, where the motors are considered as simple inertias rotating around their own axis, has been carried out, using both a time domain analysis and a frequency domain analysis, in order to show the relevance of gyroscopic effects in modelling flexible robots.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: June 1, 2002


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