Design and Control of 7-DOF Omni-directional Hexapod Robot

Marek Žák 1 , Jaroslav Rozman 2 , and František V. Zbořil 3
  • 1 Brno University of Technology, Faculty of Information Technology, Božetěchova 2, 612 66 Brno, Czech Republic
  • 2 Brno University of Technology, Faculty of Information Technology, Božetěchova 2, 612 66 Brno, Czech Republic
  • 3 Brno University of Technology, Faculty of Information Technology, Božetěchova 2, 612 66 Brno, Czech Republic

Abstract

Legged robots have great potential to travel across various types of terrain. Their many degrees of freedom enable them to navigate through difficult terrains, narrow spaces or various obstacles and they can move even after losing a leg. However, legged robots mostly move quite slowly. This paper deals with the design and construction of an omni-directional seven degrees of freedom hexapod (i.e., six-legged) robot, which is equipped with omnidirectional wheels (two degrees of freedom are used, one for turning the wheel and one for the wheel itself) usable on flat terrain to increase travel speed and an additional coxa joint that makes the robot more robust when climbing inclined terrains. This unique combination of omnidirectional wheels and additional coxa joint makes the robot not only much faster but also more robust in rough terrains and allows the robot to ride inclined terrains up to 40 degrees and remain statically stable in slopes up to 50 degrees. The robot is controlled by a terrain adaptive movement controller which adjusts the movement speed and the gait of the robot according to terrain conditions.

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