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Nov 17, 2020

An origami-inspired robotic fingertip with shape-morphing capabilities

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

To perform tasks that involve moving or handling objects, robots should swiftly adapt their grasp and manipulation strategies based on the properties of these objects and the environment surrounding them. Most robotic hands developed so far, however, have a fixed and limiting structure; thus, they can perform a limited number of movements and can only grasp specific types of objects.

Researchers at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology have recently developed a robotic that can change its shape and switch across three different configurations, which could allow it to grasp a broader variety of objects. This fingertip’s unique design, outlined in a paper presented at this year’s IEEE International Conference on Automation Science and Engineering (CASE), is inspired by origami, the renowned Japanese art of paper folding.

“Our study was inspired by two common observations in current research and ,” Zicheng Kan and Yazhan Zhang, two of the researchers who carried out the study, told TechXplore via email. “The first relates to parallel grippers developed in past research studies, which could help to achieve industrial automation. These grippers require well-selected grasping points, otherwise static equilibrium might not be achieved.”

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