Updated on 2024/02/21

写真a

 
NAKAMURA Taro
 
Organization
Faculty of Science and Engineering Professor
Other responsible organization
Precision Engineering Course of Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Master's Program
Precision Engineering Course of Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Doctoral Program
Contact information
The inquiry by e-mail is 《here
External link

Degree

  • 博士(工学) ( 信州大学 )

Education

  • 2003.3
     

    Shinshu University   Graduate School, Division of Engineering   doctor course   completed

Research History

  • 2013.4 -  

    中央大学理工学部教授

  • 2007.4 - 2013.3

    中央大学理工学部准教授   Faculty of Science and Engineering

  • 2006.4 - 2007.3

    中央大学理工学部助教授   Faculty of Science and Engineering

  • 2004.4 - 2006.3

    中央大学理工学部専任講師   Faculty of Science and Engineering

Professional Memberships

  • 日本ロボット学会

  • 日本機械学会

  • 日本フルードパワーシステム学会

  • 電気学会

  • IEEE

  • ロボティクスシンポジア

  • 精密工学会

  • CLAWAR Program Committee

  • 日本設計工学会

  • 計測自動制御学会

  • IEEE

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Research Interests

  • 機械システム

  • ロボティクス

  • メカトロニクス

  • 知能機械学

  • 機械システム,ロボティクス,メカトロニクス

  • 知能機械学,ロボティクス,メカトロニクス

Research Areas

  • Manufacturing Technology (Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Chemical Engineering) / Control and system engineering

  • Informatics / Mechanics and mechatronics  / Intelligent mechanics/Mechanical systems

  • Manufacturing Technology (Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Chemical Engineering) / Design engineering  / Design engineering/Machine functional elements/Tribology

  • Manufacturing Technology (Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Chemical Engineering) / Machine elements and tribology  / Design engineering/Machine functional elements/Tribology

  • Informatics / Robotics and intelligent system  / Intelligent mechanics/Mechanical systems

  • Manufacturing Technology (Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Chemical Engineering) / Control and system engineering  / 制御・システム工学

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Papers

  • Validation of a lower limb exoskeleton assist device focusing on viscous properties: verification of assist effectiveness by measuring muscle activity Reviewed

    Yusuke Shimoda, Tomotaka Sugino, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura

    ROBOMECH Journal   10 ( 1 )   2023.10

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:Springer Science and Business Media LLC  

    Abstract

    Because exoskeletal assistive devices are worn directly by a person, enhancing cooperation is important. However, existing assistive devices have problems in terms of their cooperation with human behaviors. This is because existing assistive devices are driven by estimating the wearer’s movement intention based on predetermined movement time and device angle information. Although these methods are expected to work as expected, in practice, it is difficult to achieve the expected behavior. Therefore, an assistance method is required to reduce such misalignment with time and misalignment between the device and wearer. Therefore, this study focused on the viscoelastic properties that generate force in response to movement and are expected to enhance coordination. In a previous study, the authors confirmed the effects of viscoelastic properties or an assistive device with variable stiffness. However, viscous characteristics during movement have not been considered. In this study, we aimed to improve the coordination by focusing on the viscous characteristics. The viscous torque outputs in response to the angular velocity are expected to be driven in response to actual human motion. In this study, the viscous torque was calculated as the product of the command viscosity coefficient and the joint angular velocity and was applied to a lower-limb exoskeleton-type assist device equipped with a magneto-viscous fluid brake and a planetary gear mechanism. In addition, a viscous command that changes the torque according to speed (proposed method), a time command that changes the output value according to the passage of time, and an angle command that changes the command value according to the angle information of the device were applied to the assist device, and surface EMG measurements and command signals were compared. The target movement was a seated movement, and the left and right vastus medialis and semimembranosus muscles were measured. More than half of the subjects showed a decrease in myopotential for five subjects for all three command methods, confirming the effectiveness of the viscous command.

    DOI: 10.1186/s40648-023-00262-y

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    Other Link: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s40648-023-00262-y/fulltext.html

  • Components and Basic Evaluation of Earthworm-Type Ice-Drilling Robot for Exploration Under Arctic-Sea-Ice Reviewed

    Y. Takeda, R. Tokoi, C. Fujikawa, M. Okui, H. Yoshida, T. Nakamura

    IECON 2023 - 49th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society   2023.10

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  • Proposal for a lifting support device for LP gas delivery operations Reviewed

    K. Oba, R. Sawahashi, M. Okui, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    IECON 2023 - 49th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society   2023.10

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  • Shoe-Type-Force-Feedback Device and Falling Sensation with Two-Step Dropping Reviewed

    Y. Ishida, R. Sawahashi, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    the IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics (SMC2023)   2023.10

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  • Traction Amplified Actuation System for Inspecting Narrow and Complex Pipes Using Enhanced Linear Antagonistic Mechanism-Bend Pipe Passage Model and Force Comparison Reviewed

    F. Ito, Y. Naruse, K. Takaya, J. Watanabe, T. Nakamura

    IEEE Access   11   76156 - 76165   2023.7

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)  

    DOI: 10.1109/access.2023.3297147

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  • Impulse Force Presentation during Ball Kicking by Lower Limb Exoskeleton with MR Fluid Brake Reviewed

    T. Shimizu, T. Masuda, R. Sawahashi, R. Nishihama, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    the 18th International Conference on Electrorheological Fluids and Magnetorheological Suspensions (ERMR2023)   2023.6

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  • Development of a Posture Keeping Training Device for Maintenance of Antigravity Muscles in a Microgravity Environment Reviewed

    Tetsuhito Fujita, Yusuke Shimoda, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Daisuke Masuda, Naoya Nakate, Kuniko Okada, Taro Nakamura

    2023.6

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  • Presentation of Underwater Sensation by Drag in Knee Motion with a Lower Limb Exoskeleton Using MR Fluid Brakes Reviewed

    R. Sawahashi, T. Masuda, T. shimizu, R. Nishihama, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    2023.6

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  • Development of a three-dimensional force feedback system using magnetorheological fluid brakes for welding instruction Reviewed

    R. Sawahashi, M. Oba, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    the 18th International Conference on Electrorheological Fluids and Magnetorheological Suspensions (ERMR2023)   2023.6

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  • Presentation of sensation of knee movement in water with a lower limb exoskeleton using magnetorheological fluid brakes Reviewed

    R. Sawahashi, T. Masuda, T. Shimizu, R. Nishihama, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    2023.6

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  • Development of Peristaltic Transfer System to Transport Feces in Space: Proposal of Drive Method using Air Inflow into the Transfer Channel Reviewed

    S. Uzawa, H. Kumamoto, C. Yamazaki, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    2023.6

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  • Proposal of a Method for Measuring Inside Diameter of Tubes Using a Drive Unit of a Robot for Inspection of Small Tubes Reviewed

    H. Nagashima, K. Uchiyama, F. Ito, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    2023.6

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  • Estimating Changing Drive Timing Effects of Exosuit on Jumping Height for Augmenting Human Instantaneous Force Reviewed

    Y. Ishii, F. Ito, T. Nakamura

    the 32nd International Symposium on Industrial Electronics (ISIE2023)   2023.6

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  • Verification of Assistive Strategy with Variable Viscosity Using Exoskeleton Device with MR Brake in Seated Motion Reviewed

    Yusuke Shimoda, Ryunosuke Sawahashi, Tetsuhito Fujita, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura

    2023.6

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  • Development of an Earthworm-Type Electrical Wire Installation Assistance Robot Using Artificial Muscles Reviewed

    F. Ito, I. Horiuchi, K. Tsuru, T. Nakamura

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters   8 ( 5 )   2999 - 3006   2023.5

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)  

    DOI: 10.1109/lra.2023.3264725

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  • Anomaly detection from images in pipes using GAN

    Shigeki Yumoto, Takumi Kitsukawa, Alessandro Moro, Sarthak Pathak, Taro Nakamura, Kazunori Umeda

    ROBOMECH Journal   10 ( 1 )   2023.3

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    Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:Springer Science and Business Media LLC  

    Abstract

    In recent years, the number of pipes that have exceeded their service life has increased. For this reason, earthworm-type robots equipped with cameras have been developed to perform regularly inspections of sewer pipes. However, inspection methods have not yet been established. This paper proposes a method for anomaly detection from images in pipes using Generative Adversarial Network (GAN). A model that combines f-AnoGAN and Lightweight GAN is used to detect anomalies by taking the difference between input images and generated images. Since the GANs are only trained with non-defective images, they are able to convert an image containing defects into one without them. Subtraction images is used to estimate the location of anomalies. Experiments were conducted using actual images of cast iron pipes to confirm the effectiveness of the proposed method. It was also validated using sewer-ml, a public dataset.

    DOI: 10.1186/s40648-023-00246-y

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    Other Link: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s40648-023-00246-y/fulltext.html

  • Development of a Bimanual Wearable Force Feedback Device with Pneumatic Artificial Muscles, MR Fluid Brakes, and Sensibility Evaluation Based on Pushing Motion Reviewed

    Ryunosuke Sawahashi, Jonah Komatsu, Rie Nishihama, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   35 ( 1 )   180 - 193   2023.2

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:Fuji Technology Press Ltd.  

    In a virtual reality (VR) space, wearing a head-mounted display can help with the visualization of objects; however, users cannot experience realistic tactile sensations. Recently, several force feedback devices have been developed, including wearable devices that use straight-fiber-type pneumatic muscles and magnetorheological fluids. This allows the devices to render elastic, frictional, and viscous forces during spatially unrestricted movement. Nevertheless, a problem remains in that previous devices could handle many bilateral upper limb movement tasks. Therefore, this study aims to develop a device that can handle movements that interact with both arms. Based on experiments concerning the pushing motion in a VR space, the influence of the pseudo force sense was determined to not be small. In addition, we confirmed that the force sensation presented by this system was more realistic when the robot was operated with both arms than when operated with the right arm.

    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2023.p0180

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  • Discrimination of Powder Particle Size and Input Amounts for the Estimation of Mixing Using a Peristaltic Mixing Conveyor Imitating an Intestinal Tube Reviewed

    Iori Terayama, Sana Oshino, Rie Nishihama, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    2023 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration (SII)   2023.1

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    DOI: 10.1109/sii55687.2023.10039173

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  • Proposal of Duct Cleaning Unit Using Planetary Gear Mechanism for Kitchen Ventilation Ducts and Design of Grease Cleaning Brush for Square Ducts: Model Design and Simulation of Effective Cleaning Range Reviewed

    T. Hitomi, Y. Monma, F. Ito, T. Nakamura

    2023 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration (SII)   2023.1

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    DOI: 10.1109/sii55687.2023.10039449

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  • Development of Shoulder Mechanism for a Wearable Upper Limb Force-Feedback Device with Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and MR Brakes Reviewed

    J. Komatsu, R. Sawahashi, T. Masuda, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    2023 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration (SII)   2023.1

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    DOI: 10.1109/sii55687.2023.10039212

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  • Prolonging rubber fatigue life using hysteresis of strain-induced crystallization of natural rubber Reviewed

    Manabu Okui, Akihiro Kojima, Itsuki Hisamichi, Shotaro Kuriyama, Tomohisa Kojima, Tomoaki Tsuji, Taro Nakamura

    Polymer Testing   117   107800 - 107800   2023.1

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:Elsevier BV  

    DOI: 10.1016/j.polymertesting.2022.107800

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  • Experimental evaluation of the white cane device with forcefeedback function using air jets Reviewed

    H. Oshima, R. Sawahashi, M.Okui, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    2023 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2023   2023.1

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    It is estimated that 250 million visually impaired people reside worldwide, and this number is expected to increase. Even though Braille blocks and guide dogs are used to guide the visually impaired, availability of installation location and cost are some of the major issues in implementing the same. Therefore, there is a need for a device for personal guidance that does not limit the location of use. Therefore, this study focuses on force-sensing presentation using the reaction force of air jets. The proposed white cane-type force-sensing device consists of a white cane, an air pressure source, solenoid valves, and a nozzle is attached to the white cane to inject compressed air. The reaction force obtained at the time of jetting generates a moment in the hand of the user, presenting force perception. Here, as a part of an initial study of the device, the effectiveness of the directional presentation, an obstacle avoidance experiment using an ultrasonic sensor, and a demonstration experiment of guidance were conducted.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII55687.2023.10039470

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  • Control of single-stroke movement of a drum-playing robot by reinforcement learning using a realistic artificial muscle-driven robot Reviewed

    Manabu Okui, Shiori Nakamura, Seigo Kimura, Ryuji Suzuki, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2022 – 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society   2022.10

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    DOI: 10.1109/iecon49645.2022.9968757

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  • Distributed Deployment With Multiple Moving Robots for Long Distance Complex Pipe Inspection

    Hiroto Sato, Kousuke Uchiyama, Fumio Ito, Ryunosuke Sawahashi, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters   7 ( 4 )   11252 - 11259   2022.10

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    In this study, we propose a method to reduce the traveling load by designing a distributed robot arrangement that considers the shape of a pipeline for a cabled in-pipe mobile robot. The objective of this study is to establish a method to reduce the friction acting on the wires of a self-propelled in-pipe mobile robot and develop a robotic system that can inspect long-distance pipes. This study contributes the purpose of this research in that it proposes a model for estimating the tension acting on the wires of a mobile robot in a pipe and describes a method for reducing the traveling load using a distributed arrangement of robots. The friction acting on the wires in the bent pipe becomes a load for the robots moving in the pipe while towing the wires. Therefore, it is difficult for these robots to inspect complex, long-distance pipelines. Furthermore, we clarified the factors that cause friction forces in long-distance pipes and modeled and quantified the friction forces acting on the wires in the pipes so that each factor could be addressed. Using this model, we propose a distributed deployment method, in which multiple mobile robots are deployed. By driving two robots separated by a distance, we confirmed that two robots could move at 2.5 mm/s in a pipeline that could not be moved by a single robot. Moreover, we proposed a method for controlling the robot according to the load acting on it and confirmed that the robot equipped with this control could inspect a narrow pipe with an inner diameter of 108 mm, where a load of approximately 340 N acted on the back end of the robot, with an efficiency that was approximately 1.7 times higher. This result has the potential to enable the configuration and control of robots, which would be difficult to achieve using conventional methods.

    DOI: 10.1109/LRA.2022.3191962

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  • Instantaneous Force Generation Mechanism Based on the Striking Motion of Mantis Shrimp - Design and Control Method of Cavitation by Simulation and Experiment

    Fumio Ito, Yusuke Ishii, Shunichi Kurumaya, Katsushi Kagaya, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters   7 ( 4 )   9342 - 9349   2022.10

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    In this letter, we describe simulations and experiments on the occurrence of cavitation with an instantaneous force generation mechanism based on the motion of the mantis shrimp. This study aims to strengthen the striking force of the developed mechanism by realizing the mechanism of cavitation occurrence. This letter presents a motion and cavitation model for the developed mechanism and provides the results of the simulations and experiments considering the occurrence of cavitation. In previous studies, mantis shrimp have been shown to have two consecutive impacts on a hard object with cavitation in water. However, no robot can imitate the striking mechanism of the mantis shrimp and replicate two consecutive impacts. In this study, the mechanism was designed and developed based on a mantis shrimp model. From the experiment, it was observed that the developed mechanism caused cavitation only at the point of impact, rather than during arm swing. This result suggested that the striking force was strengthened, providing insight into the striking mechanism of the mantis shrimp.

    DOI: 10.1109/LRA.2022.3190614

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  • Development of Semi-active Force Feedback Shoes with MR Brake Rendering a Falling Sensation and Descent Acceleration Measurement Reviewed

    R. Sawahashi, T.Tanaka, T. Masuda, M. Okui, R.Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings of the 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON2022)   2022-October   2022.10

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (international conference proceedings)  

    Recently, force feedback devices have been developed to improve the virtual reality (VR) experiences. However, most conventional force feedback devices target the upper limbs. In addition to achieving force feedback to the upper limbs, realizing force feedback to the lower limbs will make it possible to realize an experience in the VR space, which would not be achieved by force feedback to the upper limbs alone. The authors have elucidated the perceptual characteristics of the human dropping sensation to present force feedback to the lower limbs. In this study, we develop a pair of wearable force feedback shoes that can realize the falling sensation in the VR space. The proposed device meets the required specifications for descent height and acceleration to render the falling sensation. Furthermore, we confirm the usefulness of the theoretical equation by measuring the basic characteristics of the developed device.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON49645.2022.9968554

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  • Prototype of an exoskeletal lower limb force-feedback device for moving extensively in VR space Reviewed

    T. Masuda, R. Sawahashi, J. Komatsu, M. Okui, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings of the 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON2022)   2022-October   2022.10

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (international conference proceedings)  

    In recent years, force feedback devices have been developed to improve the reality of virtual reality (VR) experiences. However, most of the general force feedback devices target the upper limbs. By realizing force feedback to the lower limbs, it is possible to realize an experience in VR space that cannot be achieved by force feedback to the upper limbs alone. Therefore, in this study, we developed a lower limb force feedback device based on a physical model of the human lower limb. The output torque of the developed device that met the target torque by the experiment was confirmed. The device was then experimented with to determine if it could reproduce an impact force similar to that of a soccer pass as an initial study. The results suggested that even a low torque of 10 Nm could reproduce a soccer pass.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON49645.2022.9968915

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  • Proposal of posture guidance method using air jetting with table tennis racket type device Reviewed

    R. Suzuki, R. Sawahashi, M. Okui, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings of the 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON2022)   2022-October   2022.10

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    Because information transmission by force is a vector quantity with magnitude and direction, it can directly affect humans. However, most existing force feedback devices are stationary, and their movement is restricted. On the other hand, wearable force-feedback devices induce a strange feeling, as they must support the reaction force of the presented force at the body fixing part. Therefore, in this paper, we propose a posture guidance method using force feedback provided by air jets. Specifically, for table tennis movement guidance, we developed a prototype with two degrees of freedom using a table tennis racket. We also conducted a hand posture guidance experiment and confirmed that the proposed method can guide the wrist posture without disturbing the wearer's movement.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON49645.2022.9968815

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  • Instantaneous Force Generation Mechanism Based on the Striking Motion of Mantis Shrimp - Design and Control Method of Cavitation by Simulation and Experiment Reviewed

    F. Ito, Y. Ishii, S. Kurumaya, K. Kagaya, T. Nakamura

    In Proc. of the 2022 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2022)   2022.10

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    DOI: 10.1109/LRA.2022.3190614

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  • Ice-drilling and Gripping Experiments in Actual Conditions for Developing Earthworm-type Ice-drilling Robot for Extensive Under-sea-ice Surveys Reviewed

    R. Tokoi, C. Fujikawa, W. Toyama, M. Okui, H. Yoshida, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings of the 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON2022)   2022-October   2022.10

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    There is an urgent requirement to solve the problem of global warming. The sea ice beneath the Arctic Ocean strongly affects the global climate. However, it has not been fully explored. The range of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV) used for under-ice exploration is limited owing to their short communication range. To solve this problem, we propose a communication relay system that uses a sea ice drilling robot. We conducted excavation and gripping experiments on actual sea ice to study the parameters and control methods required to design a sea ice drilling robot. The required specifications of excavation and propulsion units were obtained from the experimental results, and a recovery method was developed to address drilling failure.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON49645.2022.9968618

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  • Development of anisotropic short-fiber oriented rubber and its application to elongation actuators Reviewed

    Hiromasa Kunisada, Kiichi Fujitani, Fumio Ito, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings of the 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON2022)   2022-October   2022.10

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    In this paper, we describe the development of short-fiber oriented rubber and its application to elongation-type actuators. Short-fiber oriented rubber, i.e., rubber containing oriented short fibers with lengths of 3 mm, has anisotropy in the direction of fiber orientation. In a previous study, it was shown that short fiber-reinforced artificial muscles made of short-fiber oriented rubber can achieve up to 17% shrinkage. However, in that study, characteristics other than the amount of shrinkage were not measured, the basic characteristics of the developed artificial muscle were unclear, and the shrinkage ratio was smaller than that for existing straight-fiber-type artificial muscle. In the present study, we developed a new method for fabricating short-fiber oriented rubber and measured the tensile characteristics in the direction of fiber orientation and vertical to the orientation direction. Moreover, we developed an elongation-type artificial muscle from the rubber sheet and measured its elongation characteristics. Test results indicated that the fabricated rubber sheet had anisotropy. They also indicated that the anisotropy increased with the fiber concentration and that the fiber restraint acted not only in the orientation direction but also in the vertical direction. Furthermore, the developed elongation-type artificial muscle was three times more anisotropic in the ratio of axial changes to diametral changes. On the basis of these results, we expect to develop an automated production method for soft actuators.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON49645.2022.9969096

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  • Mixing Determination for Solid Rocket Fuel Production by Peristaltic Mixing Pump Using Packing Method Reviewed

    S. Oshino, I.Terayama, R. Nishihama, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings of the 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON2022)   2022-October   2022.10

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    For space rockets, a rotating mixer is used to produce solid fuel. However, mixing with the rotary mixer is subject to high shear forces that limit the equipment drive. In a previous study, the authors developed a new production method using a pneumatically driven peristaltic mixing pump that simulates the intestine and a sensing system with pressure and flow rate sensors. Solid rocket fuel was successfully produced by a small pump unit. In this study, mixing experiments of solid propellant consisting of several types of powders, including metal powder and highly viscous fluids were conducted using a pump unit with a volume size eight times larger than that used in the previous study. In this experiment, mixing was performed with the materials packed in a plastic bag to increase efficiency. This reduces the contact area between the rubber tube and the contents of the device. Because only part of the mixing process is reflected in the behavior of the device, it is difficult to see differences in the sensor values, and it is unknown whether existing methods can be applied. The results of the experiment showed that the existing sensing system could be used to confirm the differences in characteristics due to the mixing process based on the time series data of air pressure and flow rate. By using Gaussian mixture model, which is a type of clustering, the mixing state was roughly binary discrimination from the acquired sensor values. This suggests that it is possible to estimate the mixing degree in large pumps using existing systems.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON49645.2022.9968625

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  • Antislip Anchoring Mechanism for Peristaltic Pipe Inspection Robots Traveling in Low-Friction Environments

    K. Uchiyama, H. Sato, F. Ito, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings of the 48th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON2022)   2022.10

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (international conference proceedings)  

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON49645.2022.9968391

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  • Distributed deployment with multiple moving robots for long distance complex pipe inspection Reviewed

    H. Sato, K. Uchiyama, F. Ito, R. Sawahashi, T. Nakamura

    In Proc. of the 2022 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2022)   7 ( 4 )   11252 - 11259   2022.10

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (international conference proceedings)   Publisher:Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)  

    DOI: 10.1109/LRA.2022.3191962

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  • Development of Peristaltic Transfer System to Transport Feces in Space: Proposal of Driving Method Using Pressure Difference in Peristaltic Pump Reviewed

    Shogo Uzawa, Hiroya Kumamoto, Chiaki Yamazaki, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE Access   10   128399 - 128407   2022.10

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    DOI: 10.1109/access.2022.3227068

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  • Body Guidance by Force Feedback Device Using Air-jet

    Sawahashi Ryunosuke, Yasui Takumi, Okui Manabu, Nishihama Rie, Nakamura rtual Taro

    Transactions of the Virtual Reality Society of Japan   27 ( 3 )   264 - 273   2022.9

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    Various haptic devices for application to virtual reality have been developed. Most of them have to be stationary on a desk, thus users cannot move around. To overcome this shortcoming, we propose a wearable force feedback device that uses air jet. In this paper, a prototype for hand position guidance which is able to provide force in any direction is developed, and its performance to guide the wearer’s hand is evaluated by experiments.

    DOI: 10.18974/tvrsj.27.3_264

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  • シャコ規範型瞬発力発生機構の開発ー瞬間的動作に伴うキャビテーション発生とそのコントロールー

    伊藤文臣, 石井優丞, 車谷駿一, 加賀谷勝史, 中村太郎

    日本ロボット学会誌   40 ( 7 )   639 - 642   2022.9

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  • Grasping Characteristics of Flexible Propulsion Unit Using Braid Mechanism for Lunar Exploration Robot. Reviewed

    Chikage Fujikawa, Ryosuke Tokoi, Wataru Toyama, Manabu Okui, Tomoaki Tsuji, Taro Nakamura 0001, Takashi Kubota

    CLAWAR   33 - 41   2022.9

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    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-031-15226-9_6

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    Other Link: https://dblp.uni-trier.de/db/conf/clawar/clawar2022.html#FujikawaTTOT0K22

  • Confirmation of Variable Diameter TRM Operation. Reviewed

    Yuta Naruse, Kazuki Takaya, Fumio Ito, Jun'ichi Watanabe, Taro Nakamura 0001

    CLAWAR   349 - 357   2022.9

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    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-031-15226-9_33

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  • Evaluation of Support Device for Manual Handling of Gas Cylinders. Reviewed

    Kiyotaka Oba, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura 0001

    CLAWAR   550 - 559   2022.9

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    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-031-15226-9_50

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  • Effect on Jumping Height by Changing Jumping Powered Exoskeleton Attachment Position for Augmentation of Human Instantaneous Movements. Reviewed

    Yusuke Ishii, Fumio Ito, Shunichi Kurumaya, Taro Nakamura 0001

    CLAWAR   537 - 549   2022.9

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    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-031-15226-9_49

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  • Assist Effectiveness Study based on Viscosity: Comparison of Assumed Command Signal and Actual Command Signal. Reviewed

    Yusuke Shimoda, Tetsuhito Fujita, Katsuki Machida, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura

    RO-MAN   686 - 692   2022.8

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    DOI: 10.1109/RO-MAN53752.2022.9900630

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  • Instantaneous force generation mechanism based on the striking motion of the mantis shrimp - The effect of the diameter of the artificial muscle on the motion of the mechanism

    F. Ito, R. Ono, Y. Ishii, S. Kurumaya, K. Kagaya, T. Nakamura

    In Proc. of the 23rd IEEE Int. Conf. on Industrial Technology(ICIT)   2022.8

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  • Proposal of a Square-Duct Cleaning Mechanism Using a Noncircular Brush with a Planetary Gear Mechanism: Brush-Trajectory Design and Simulation

    Y. Yamanaka, T. Hitomi, F. Ito, T. Nakamura

    In Proc. of the 23rd IEEE Int. Conf. on Industrial Technology (ICIT)   2022.8

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    DOI: 10.1109/ICIT48603.2022.10002720

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  • Peristaltic Mixing Pump Based on Bowel Peristalsis Using Pneumatic Artificial Rubber Muscles and Prospects for Practical Applications.

    Taro Nakamura

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   34 ( 2 )   276 - 278   2022.4

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    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2022.p0276

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  • Development of Variable Viscoelastic Joint Module Performance Evaluation and Proposal of Application Examples Reviewed

    T. Fujita, Y. Shimoda, K. Machida, M. Okui, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    Actuators   11 ( 3 )   2022.3

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    With the diversification of robots, modularization of robots has been attracting attention. In our previous study, we developed a robot that mimics the principle of human joint drive using a straight-fiber-type pneumatic rubber artificial muscle ("artificial muscle") and a magnetorheological fluid brake ("MR brake"). The variable viscoelastic joints have been modularized. Therefore, this paper evaluates the basic characteristics of the developed Joint Module, characterizes the variable viscoelastic joint, and compares it with existing modules. As basic characteristics, we confirmed that the Joint Module has a variable viscoelastic element by experimentally verifying the joint angle, stiffness, viscosity, and tracking performance of the generated torque to the command value. As a characteristic evaluation, we verified the change in motion and response to external disturbances due to differences in driving methods through simulations and experiments and proved the strength of the variable viscoelastic joint against external disturbances, which is a characteristic of variable viscoelastic joints. Based on the results of the basic characterization and the characterization of the variable viscoelastic drive joint, we discussed what kind of device the Joint Module is suitable to be applied to and clarified the position of the variable viscoelastic joint as an actuator system.

    DOI: 10.3390/act11030089

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  • Development of a Compact Pneumatic Valve Using Rotational Motion for a Pneumatically Driven Mobile Robot With Periodic Motion in a Pipe.

    Hiroto Sato, Kousuke Uchiyama, Yuki Mano, Fumio Ito, Shunichi Kurumaya, Manabu Okui, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura 0001

    IEEE Access   9   165271 - 165285   2021.12

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    This paper describes the development of a compact pneumatic valve that can obtain a high flow rate in a periodically pneumatically driven pipe-moving robot. Plumbing facilities around the world have fallen into disrepair in recent years. Pneumatically driven mobile robots are widely used as an inspection method due to the small inner diameter and complicated shape of the pipes. Various types of robots have been studied, such as earthworm, inchworm, and spiral tube robots. However, these robots are driven by existing pneumatic valve technologies, such as needle-type and solenoid valves, which limit the use of small mobile robots. Small pneumatic valves have a low flow rate, and the entire system is complicated because multiple air pressures are controlled by multiple electrical systems. Thus, focusing on the structure and periodic motion of the ball valve, we developed a pneumatic valve that can periodically apply pressure to multiple pneumatic actuators using only rotational motion with one degree of freedom. We also applied this pneumatic valve to a wave propagation robot and discussed the theoretical running speed of the robot with this valve.

    DOI: 10.1109/ACCESS.2021.3135035

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  • Development of a Rotary Cleaning Mechanism Using Planetary Gears for Removing Grease Deposited in Kitchen Ventilation Ducts.

    Takehiro Hitomi, Yuta Yamanaka, Fumio Ito, Taro Nakamura 0001

    SII   473 - 478   2021.12

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    In this paper, it is proposed a grease dust cleaning mechanism using a planetary gear mechanism to remove accumulated grease in ventilation ducts.In existing research, cleaning robots have been developed to remove dust from air-conditioning ducts. The robot successfully removed dust from the ducts by rotating and scraping the brushes and using air pressure. However, no cleaning mechanism has been developed to remove the highly viscous grease that adheres to the ventilation ducts installed in restaurants. Thus, it is difficult to clean the oil and dust ducts, which are impenetrable.Therefore, in this paper, the authors propose a grease-cleaning mechanism using a planetary gear mechanism for cleaning grease from round ducts. This mechanism cleans the inside of the pipe by scrubbing off the grease from the walls by the rotation and revolution of the brush. This paper describes the selection of the cleaning mechanism, the modeling of the brush trajectory, the control method, and the evaluation experiment of the control method. The evaluation experiment of the control method confirmed the validity of the model and the fact that the brushes made contact with the entire inside of the pipe. This shows the possibility that the inside of the pipe could be efficiently cleaned by the intermittent collisions of the dispersed brushes.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII52469.2022.9708739

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    Other Link: https://dblp.uni-trier.de/rec/conf/sii/2022

  • Proposal of a decentralized peristaltic movement generation based on actual intestines and verification by content transfer experiment.

    Daisuke Matsui, Sana Oshino, I. Terayama, Rie Nishihama, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura 0001

    SII   65 - 70   2021.12

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    DOI: 10.1109/SII52469.2022.9708865

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  • Sensory Evaluation of Friction and Viscosity Rendering with a Wearable 4 Degrees of Freedom Force Feedback Device Composed of Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and Magnetorheological Fluid Clutches Reviewed

    M. Okui, T. Tanaka, Y. Onozuka, T. Nakamura

    Journal of Drive and Control   18 ( 4 )   77 - 83   2021.12

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  • Investigation of Constant Velocity Motion with Physical Interaction System for Long Term Stay in Microgravity Space Reviewed

    T. Fujita, K. Machida, Y. Shimoda, M. Okui, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    Proc. 11th JFPS International Symposium on Fluid Power   58 - 65   2021.10

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  • Pneumatic Source Proposal for Improving Portability and Responsiveness of Artificial Muscle via Dimethyl Ether Phase Change and Combustion Reviewed

    R. Enjo, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    169 - 174   2021.10

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  • In-Pipe Inspection Robot Capable of Actively Exerting Propulsive and Tractive Forces With Linear Antagonistic Mechanism.

    Fumio Ito, K. Takaya, Masashi Kamata, Manabu Okui, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura 0001

    IEEE Access   9   131245 - 131259   2021.9

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    In this study, the authors comprehensively evaluated the traveling performance of a flexible pipe inspection robot (PI-RO) that can actively output both propulsion and traction forces. Household pipes must be frequently inspected for cracks and corrosion to ensure continuous provision of water and gas. As these pipes are essential for our everyday life, it is difficult to suspend their usage for long periods; hence, inspection should be conducted for short durations. In addition, inspecting entire pipelines using existing methods is challenging because the pipes are constructed over long distances and have complex structures. Therefore, we developed a flexible robot that can actively output propulsion and traction forces to inspect long-distance complex pipelines, such as household pipelines. Herein, we describe the flexible structural design of a PI-RO that inspects thin one-inch pipes (inner diameter of approximately 28 mm) typically present in household piping. We also evaluated the characteristics of each PI-RO unit. Finally, we confirmed that the PI-RO is not significantly affected by the traveling environment, such as long distances and complex small-diameter pipes, by conducting traveling experiments on small pipes (inner diameter 28 mm) and long-distance (up to approximately 11.7 m) complex pipes composed of horizontal, vertical, and 90° bend pipes.

    DOI: 10.1109/ACCESS.2021.3114698

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  • Wave Propagation Type Pipe Inspection Robot with the Linear Antagonistic Mechanism for Enhancing Traction Force -Increasing Tractive Force with a Small Number of Drive Units using Superposition of Linear Antagonistic Mechanisms-

    伊藤文臣, 多加谷一輝, 佐藤広都, 渡邉淳一, 中村太郎

    日本ロボット学会誌   39 ( 7 )   2021.9

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  • Generalization Capability of Mixture Estimation Model for Peristaltic Continuous Mixing Conveyor.

    Sana Oshino, Rie Nishihama, Kota Wakamatsu, Katsuma Inoue, Daisuke Matsui, Manabu Okui, Kohei Nakajima, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Taro Nakamura 0001

    IEEE Access   9   138866 - 138875   2021.9

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    We propose herein a method for estimating the mixing state of the contents of a peristaltic continuous mixing conveyor simulating the intestine, developed for mixing and conveying powders and liquids. This study serves to improve a previously proposed method for estimating the mixing state using a logistic regression model with the pressure and flow rate sensors installed in the device as inputs. Moreover, the estimation accuracy of the proposed method is better than that of the previous method. The generalizability of the proposed method is evaluated for four conditions in which the feeding order of the contents, powder, and liquid are changed. The feeding order is as follows: powder first, liquid first, and powder and liquid alternately. As a result, a highly accurate estimation of mixing is achieved under the condition wherein the powder component is in the unit adjacent to the lid, but not under the condition wherein the liquid component is fed first. It is speculated that this is because the movement of the powder component inside the device is more easily reflected by the pressure and flow rate sensors installed in the device than in the liquid component.

    DOI: 10.1109/ACCESS.2021.3112614

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  • Evaluation of Optimal Cleaning Tools for the Development of a Cleaning Robot for Grease from Ventilation Ducts.

    Yuta Yamanaka, Takehiro Hitomi, Fumio Ito, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Robotics for Sustainable Future - CLAWAR 2021(CLAWAR)   324 LNNS   348 - 356   2021.8

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    In this study, the authors started to develop a robot that can clean grease in ventilation ducts. We determined the required specifications of the robot, constructed a model of the cleaning brush, and developed grease samples. We also conducted experiments to evaluate the performance of the cleaning tools in cleaning grease with different materials, bristle shapes, and rigidity. As a result, it was found that the brush-type could scrape the grease off the cleaning surface and adsorb more grease between the bristles of the brush than the sponge-type. It was also confirmed that the contact area of the brushes affected the cleaning performance. The brush composed of nylon bristles showed the highest cleaning performance at 94%.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-86294-7_31

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  • Excavation Experiment of Earth Worm Type Seabed Exploration Robot in Actual Sea Area.

    Manabu Okui, Ryosuke Tokoi, Wataru Toyama, Kazuki Tsumura, Keita Isaka, Tomoki Watanabe, Taro Nakamura 0001, Hiroshi Yoshida

    Robotics for Sustainable Future - CLAWAR 2021(CLAWAR)   324 LNNS   337 - 347   2021.8

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    The results of an excavation experiment in an actual sea area using the earth worm type seabed exploration robot are reported in this paper. The robot tested in the experiments is SEAVO II, which has been developed by the authors. Seawater-resistant processing was applied to the SEAVO II, and field experiments were conducted on the coast of Izu Oshima island. Four types of experiments were conducted: vertical excavation in sand, gravel, and water, and horizontal excavation in sand. In the vertical excavation on sand, the SEAVO II successfully excavated 490 mm, which is the same level as that of the previous studies. However, although the excavation was difficult and the excavating distance was limited to 100 mm or less for the other three conditions, the issues in each environment could be clarified.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-86294-7_30

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  • Residual Water Removal Mechanism for Obtaining Clear Images with Sewer Pipe Inspection Robot.

    Kosuke Uchiyama, Hiroto Sato, Fumio Ito, Shunichi Kurumaya, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Robotics for Sustainable Future - CLAWAR 2021(CLAWAR)   143 - 153   2021.8

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    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-86294-7_13

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  • Dropping Sensation for Development of Lower Limb Force Feedback Device Reviewed

    T. Masuda, T. Tanaka, R. Sawahashi, M. Okui, R. Nishihama, T. Nakamura

    2021 30th IEEE International Conference on Robot and Human Interactive Communication, RO-MAN 2021   398 - 405   2021.8

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    In this study, we evaluate the dropping sensation for the development of a wearable lower limb force feedback device that can render both dropping and walking sensations. The developed device can render the dropping sensation at a smaller height than in reality by decelerating and stopping descent during the rendering of the drop image. Considering the user will be walking with the device, a smaller device height leads to better safety. The purpose of this study is to clarify the required specifications of the height of the vertical range of motion of the platform part, and the feasibility of the concept of rendering the dropping sensation. For this purpose, the dropping sensation for the difference in human acceleration time and human deceleration acceleration was evaluated. The results showed that the rendering of the dropping sensation required more than 0.41 s of descent at an acceleration of approximately 1377 mm/s2. Moreover, the dropping sensation and sense of reality were not impaired, even when the platform part of the foot was decelerated. This result indicates that the device can be made smaller.

    DOI: 10.1109/RO-MAN50785.2021.9515498

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  • Improved Conveying Efficiency of a Peristaltic movement type Pump Using a Watering System for Vertical Conveying of Excavated Soil at Construction Sites.

    Hirochika Oshima, Haruka Adachi, Daisuke Matsui, Kota Wakamatsu, Hiroya Kumamoto, Sana Oshino, Masahiro Ueda, Taro Nakamura 0001

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics(AIM)   1006 - 1012   2021.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM46487.2021.9517503

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  • Estimating deformation of pipe from its internal image Reviewed

    K. Kosuge, A. Oyama, H. Sato, K. Uchiyama, T.Nakamura, K. Umeda

    Proc. 7th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics (ICAM)   2021.7

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  • Propulsion Unit Control Method for Visualization of Grasping State of Earthworm-type Lunar Excavation Robot.

    Ryosuke Tokoi, Wataru Toyama, Tomoki Watanabe, Kazuki Tsumura, Manabu Okui, Hirotaka Sawada, Takashi Kubota, Taro Nakamura 0001

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics(AIM)   2021-July   675 - 681   2021.7

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    Investigation of the lunar subsurface environment is expected to lead to the elucidation of the origin of stars and the discovery of new resources. However, there are still many unknowns in this regard. In a previous study, we developed a drilling robot for lunar exploration and succeeded in drilling vertically up to 938 mm. However, control methods for the robot have not been studied in detail so far, and the grasping state of the propulsion unit during drilling has not been observed. In the study described in this paper, threshold coordination method for the current of the propulsion unit's motors is introduced to achieve effective hole grasping and propulsion. Subsequently, gripping force and penetrating force characteristics of the propulsion unit are tested to understand the grasping state of the propulsion unit during drilling based on the current value and the angle information of the motor. Finally, in-pipe propulsion and excavation experiments were conducted. From the experimental results, we concluded that the proposed control method can be used to grasp the hole with changing hole diameter and monitor the grasping state of the propulsion unit in the hole.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM46487.2021.9517536

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  • Construction of Distributed Sensing System for Peristaltic Continuous Mixing Conveyor Imitating Intestines: Internal State Measurement Using Accelerometer.

    Sana Oshino, Kota Wakamatsu, Daisuke Matsui, Rie Nishihama, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura 0001

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics(AIM)   86 - 92   2021.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM46487.2021.9517474

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  • Detection of Rust from Images in Pipes Using Deep Learning Reviewed

    A. Oyama, H. Sato, K. Kosuge, K. Uchiyama, T. Nakamura, K. Umeda

    Proc. 18th International Conference on Ubiquitous Robots (UR)   2021.7

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  • Instantaneous force generation mechanism based on the striking motion of mantis shrimp -Analytical and experimental verification of the increase in instantaneous force using exoskeleton spring mechanism-

    Fumio Ito, Shunichi Kurumaya, Riki Ono, Katsushi Kagaya, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters   6 ( 4 )   1 - 1   2021.7

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    We developed a robot generating instantaneous force inspired by the smashing mantis shrimp, and conducted dynamic analysis using the mechanistic model. We compared the performance with and without the elastic elements of the exoskeleton to examine the contribution of each spring element. Previously, we confirmed the operation of the proposed mechanism of the shrimp-inspired-system. Because the effectiveness of the mechanism has not fully been examined as an integrated system of elastic components, here we further performed the rigorous numerical simulation using the model otherwise understanding would be limited in the physical robot. From the numerical results, it was confirmed that the proposed mechanism including the spring shortened the time to strike by 0.737 times and increased the impulse at the time of strike by 1.702 times compared with the mechanism using only pneumatic artificial muscles. The results of the simulations demonstrated the interaction between the pneumatic artificial muscles and the elastic elements of the exoskeleton. Our findings can give an insight into the integrative design of the artificial muscles and elastic mechanisms by capitalizing on a design evolved in nature.

    DOI: 10.1109/lra.2021.3094740

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  • Development of a Wearable Four-Degrees-of-Freedom Force Feedback Device with a Clutch Mechanism Using Artificial Muscle Contraction Reviewed

    Ryunosuke Sawahashi, Yuki Onozuka, Toshinari Tanaka, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    2021 IEE International Conference on Industrial Technology (ICIT)   2021-March   47 - 54   2021.3

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    In a virtual reality (VR) space, wearing a head-mounted display can help with the visualization of objects although users cannot experience realistic tactile sensations. Recently, several force feedback devices have been developed, including wearable devices that use straight-fiber-type pneumatic muscles and magnetorheological fluids. This allows the devices to render elastic, frictional, and viscous forces during spatially unrestricted movement. However, during friction and viscosity rendering, the elasticity of the artificial muscle is influenced by the elastic element of the muscle, preventing proper presentation of the force. Therefore, this study proposed a clutch mechanism to switch the force presentation of elastic elements by the contraction of artificial muscles. The mechanism was incorporated into a wearable four-degrees-of-freedom force feedback device, and its elastic, frictional, and viscous force feedback performances were quantitatively assessed via fundamental property experiments. Furthermore, a VR space was constructed to present the operator with force perceptions of virtual elastic, frictional, and viscous objects within that space, and the system's performance was qualitatively assessed. The results confirmed a reduction in the effect of elastic elements and an improvement in the presentation performance. Additionally, the use of this device in the VR space was confirmed to improve the realism of virtual objects in terms of friction and viscosity.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICIT46573.2021.9453574

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  • Instantaneous Force Generation Mechanism with the Exoskeleton Spring Inspired by the Striking Motion of Odontodactylus scyllarus:—Modeling and Numerical Simulation of Instantaneous Force Generation Mechanism—

    Ito Fumio, Kurumaya Shunichi, Kagaya Katsushi, Nakamura Taro

    Journal of the Robotics Society of Japan   39 ( 2 )   181 - 184   2021.3

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    <p>In this paper, the authors described the modeling method of the instantaneous force generation mechanism inspired by the striking motion of Odontodactylus scyllarus and the evaluation of the mechanism. Animals use the contraction of living muscle as actuators to perform various movements. Some arthropods produce instantaneous movements by using the combined force of the exoskeleton spring and muscle force. Few reports deal with such an instantaneous force generation mechanism of the combined force in the numerical simulation. Our purpose of this study was to construct the instantaneous force generation mechanism by the combined force of elastic elements of the exoskeleton and pneumatic artificial muscles, inspired by the instantaneous force generation mechanism of Odontodactylus scyllarus. In the previous study, we have confirmed that the instantaneous force generation device and the possibility of generating instantaneous force by the physical model. In this paper, the authors further constructed a model of the proposed mechanism as a translational rotation system and performed a dynamic analysis by numerical simulation, confirming the effectiveness of the proposed model. </p>

    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.39.181

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  • Development of Front-Actuation-Type Excavating Unit for Lunar Excavating Exploration Robot “LEAVO”

    Tomoki WATANABE, Ami FUJIWARA, Naoaki TADAMI, Keita ISAKA, Megan BARTHELEMY, Manabu OKUI, Hirotaka SAWADA, Takashi KUBOTA, Taro NAKAMURA

    TRANSACTIONS OF THE JAPAN SOCIETY FOR AERONAUTICAL AND SPACE SCIENCES, AEROSPACE TECHNOLOGY JAPAN   19 ( 2 )   211 - 216   2021.3

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    DOI: 10.2322/tastj.19.211

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  • Verification of the “AB-Wear” Semi-Exoskeleton-Type Power-Assist Suit in Providing Assistance to the Lower Back Reviewed

    Yuta Yamanaka, Masashi Kashima, Hirokazu Arakawa, Rie Nishihama, Kazuya Yokoyama, Taro Nakamura

    2021 IEEE International Conference on Industrial Technology (ICIT)   2021-March   111 - 117   2021.3

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    To reduce lower back pain of workers, we developed an assist suit for lumbar support in our previous studies. This suit, called AB-Wear II, has mechanisms to aid muscle strength through the inflating power of artificial muscles and balloon actuators, and reduce compressive forces acting on the spine through leaf springs. However, due to the stiffness of the leaf spring and the soft fabric supporter fixed to the wearer's waist, the device slipped out of place during a lifting motion, causing a loss of assistive force. In this study, a new version, AB-Wear III, was developed. The leaf springs in AB-Wear III are composed of a soft material that allows them to follow a wearer's movements. The leaf spring supports the posture of the spine by applying pressure against the back, and it should also reduce the shear force that causes lower back pain. In addition, a lumbar fixation mechanism using a leaf spring wound in an arc shape near the pelvis was developed to fix the device to the body of a wearer and prevent the device from slipping. Based on the electromyography (EMG) of the erector spinae muscles during a lifting motion while wearing AB-Wear III and a questionnaire, the optimal contact position between the back and leaf spring was found to be 60% of the spine length. At the abovementioned length, EMG was reduced by 16.7% than without the device. Subjective experiments also confirmed that the wearers' endurance was improved and lower back pain was reduced using the device.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICIT46573.2021.9453629

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  • Packaging of Mixed Materials in Peristaltic Mixer for Solid Propellant Production

    Kota WAKAMATSU, Daiki HAGIWARA, Haruka ADACHI, Kyota ASHIGAKI, Akihiro IWASAKI, Yasuyuki YAMADA, Hiroto HABU, Taro NAKAMURA

    TRANSACTIONS OF THE JAPAN SOCIETY FOR AERONAUTICAL AND SPACE SCIENCES, AEROSPACE TECHNOLOGY JAPAN   19 ( 2 )   205 - 210   2021.3

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    DOI: 10.2322/tastj.19.205

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  • Development of an exoskeleton-type assist suit utilizing variable stiffness control devices based on human joint characteristics

    Seigo Kimura, Ryuji Suzuki, Katsuki Machida, Masashi Kashima, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura

    Actuators   10 ( 1 )   1 - 20   2021.1

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    In this paper, the prototype of the assistive suit for lower limbs was developed. The prototype was based on an assist method with joint stiffness and antagonized angle control. The assist method comprises a system consisting of a pneumatic artificial muscle and a pull spring, which changes the joint stiffness and the antagonized angle to correspond to the movement phase and aims at coordinated motion assistance with the wearer. First, the characteristics of the developed prototype were tested. It was confirmed that the measured value of the prototype followed the target value in the relationship between torque and angle. In addition, there was hysteresis in the measured value, but it did not affect the assist. Next, the evaluation of standing-up and gait assist by measuring electromyography (EMG) of the knee extensor muscle was conducted using the prototype. In all subjects, a decrease in EMG due to the assist was confirmed. In one subject, the maximum decrease rate at the peak of the EMG was about 50% for standing-up motion and about 75% for gait motion. From the results of these assist evaluations, the effectiveness of the assist method based on the joint stiffness and antagonistic angle control using the prototype was confirmed.

    DOI: 10.3390/act10010017

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  • Horizontal Drilling with Seabed Robotic Explorer.

    Ryosuke Tokoi, Wataru Toyama, Kazuki Tsumura, Tomoki Watanabe, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura 0001, Hiroshi Yoshida

    Robotics for Sustainable Future - CLAWAR 2021(CLAWAR)   329 - 336   2021

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    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-86294-7_29

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  • Prolonging the Fatigue Life of Soft Rubber Actuators by Inhibiting Crack Extension Using the Hysteresis of Strain-Induced Crystallization of Natural Rubber

    Manabu Okui, Akihiro Kojima, Itsuki Hisamichi, Shotaro Kuriyama, Tomohisa Kojima, Tomoaki Tsuji, Taro Nakamura

    SSRN Electronic Journal   2021

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    DOI: 10.2139/ssrn.3996748

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  • Compact Rotary Valve Mechanism for Pneumatic Mobile Robot with Periodic Air Supplying

    Mano Yuki, Sato Hiroto, Ito Fumio, Okui Manabu, Yamada Yasuyuki, Nakamura Taro

    Journal of the Robotics Society of Japan   38 ( 10 )   965 - 974   2020.12

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    <p>In recent years, the aging of pipelines has been severe and has caused fatal accidents. The pipe diameters are small, and the layouts are complex. Pneumatically driven mobile robots have become popular as inspection methods. Various types of robots have been studied, like earthworm-type robots, inchworm-type robots, and spiral-tube-type robots. Typically, they make periodic movements; however, they have challenges because they are driven by existing pneumatic valve technologies, which are limited to small mobile robots. Small pneumatic valves have low flow rates and limit the performance of pneumatic actuators. Therefore, we focused on the structure of the ball valve and periodic motion. Furthermore, in this paper, we developed the Compact Rotary Valve Mechanism for pneumatic mobile robots in pipe inspection, which generates periodic air pressure. </p>

    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.38.965

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  • Development of Soft Pneumatic Actuators Using High-Strain Elastic Materials with Stress Anisotropy of Short Fibers

    Akihiro Kojima, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings of The 1st International Electronic Conference on Actuator Technology: Materials, Devices and Applications   64 ( 1 )   41 - 41   2020.11

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    In recent years, soft robots, such as those with high human affinity and those that excellently imitate the movements of natural creatures, have gained considerable attention. In soft robots, structurally flexible soft actuators need to be used, not conventional motors or hydraulic/pneumatic cylinders. Various types of soft actuators have been developed depending on the driving principle. A pneumatic rubber artificial muscle is a kind of soft actuator that acquires power through injection of a working fluid, such as air, into an elastic structure, such as rubber. In this study, the authors developed an actuator, namely, the straight-fiber-type artificial muscle, which exhibits excellent contraction characteristics. This artificial muscle consists of a rubber tube that contains reinforcing fibers arranged in the axial direction. When air pressure is applied to the rubber tube, the artificial muscle expands only in the radial direction and contracts in the axial direction due to the restraining effect of the reinforcing fiber. While this artificial muscle exhibits excellent contraction properties, it has some drawbacks. One is the difficulty in enclosing the reinforced fibers that have accumulated in the rubber tube, making this artificial muscle difficult to manufacture. In this study, we investigated short-fiber-reinforced artificial muscles that can be easily manufactured. First, a short-fiber-reinforced rubber was prepared, and anisotropy was evaluated via a tensile test. Then, the short-fiber-reinforced artificial muscles were prepared, and their contractions rates were evaluated. The results confirmed that a short-fiber-reinforced rubber can be useful for the manufacture of artificial muscles.

    DOI: 10.3390/iecat2020-08526

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  • Two-degree-of-freedom pipe selection mechanism using contraction and extension unit composed of single tube and its application to a gas pipe inspection robot

    伊藤文臣, 佐藤広都, 眞野雄貴, 奥井学, 中村太郎

    日本機械学会論文集(Web)   86 ( 891 )   2020.11

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    DOI: 10.1299/transjsme.20-00052

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  • Proposal of Motion Judgment Algorithm Based on Joint Angle of Variable Elastic Assist Suit with High Back Drivability.

    Seigo Kimura, Ryuji Suzuki, Katsuki Machida, Rie Nishihama, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   32 ( 5 )   863 - 875   2020.10

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    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2020.p0863

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  • Path restriction and speed regulation via force feedback-type welding teaching device using magnetorheological brakes

    Manabu Okui, Soichiro Sugibayashi, Ryuji Suzuki, Taro Nakamura

    Smart Materials and Structures   29 ( 10 )   2020.10

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    Welding is one of the forms of nonautomated, heavy labor used in the shipbuilding industry. In the shipbuilding process, the hull is first welded by an industrial automatic welding machine, then irregular welded part correction and welding in narrow places that machines cannot reach are performed by welding workers. Welding operators are required to weld indeterminate objects in narrow working spaces. In addition, it is difficult to perform high-quality welding because the ability to accurately trace a welding line at a constant speed requires a long training period. In this research, a welding training device that assists trainees in skill acquisition was developed. The proposed device, which comprises two magnetorheological (MR) brakes, renders a welding path and restricts welding speed. The MR brakes have a response speed comparable to that of powder brakes, have a high output-to-weight ratio, and are also considered to be suitable for use in welding training devices. A prototype and control strategy were developed, and the performance of the device in actual welding work was evaluated. Results shows that path rendering strategy is possible to present routes with an accuracy of 1 mm or better and speed control strategy can regulate the speed required for welding.

    DOI: 10.1088/1361-665X/aba846

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  • Influence of vertical acceleration for inducing sensation of dropping by lower limb force feedback device.

    T. Tanaka, Yuki Onozuka, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceeding of 29th IEEE International Conference on Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RO-MAN 2020)   392 - 397   2020.9

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    DOI: 10.1109/RO-MAN47096.2020.9223476

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  • Overhead Work Assist with Passive Gravity Compensation Mechanism and Horizontal Link Mechanism for Agriculture.

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Hirokazu Arakawa, Taro Watanabe, Shunya Fukuyama, Rie Nishihama, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceeding of 29th IEEE International Conference on Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RO-MAN 2020)   104 - 111   2020.9

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    DOI: 10.1109/RO-MAN47096.2020.9223612

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  • Antagonistic drive mechanism to increase impulsive force inspired by exoskeleton spring system of mantis shrimp

    Shunichi Kurumaya, Fumio Ito, Riki Ono, Katushi Kagaya, Taro Nakamura

    Robots in Human Life- Proceedings of the 23rd International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines, CLAWAR 2020   175 - 182   2020.8

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    In this paper, a mechanism for generating an impulsive force by using the distortion of an exoskeleton is described. Pneumatic artificial muscles not only have a high power to weight ratio, but also have a high affinity with the human body due to their use of air pressure. However, pneumatic artificial muscles have a slow stretch response rate due to their viscous properties. Therefore, earthworm type mobile robots and wearable assistive devices using artificial muscles move slowly and have difficulty assisting human movements. We focus on the mechanism of force generation using the distortion of the exoskeleton, similar to what is seen in the punching of a mantis or the jumping of a grasshopper, as a countermeasure against the delay in the response rate of the artificial muscle. In this study, we propose a new mechanism to generate a shooting force by incorporating an element similar to an exoskeleton spring into the antagonistic drive mechanism of an artificial muscle. We designed and developed a prototype then operated it and measured the impulsive force. It was found that the developed mechanism showed similar joint movements through muscle contraction to those of mantis shrimp and grasshoppers. Furthermore, it was shown that the time constant for the maximum strike force was 6.6 N and 63.2 % of the maximum impulsive force was 0.183 s.

    DOI: 10.13180/clawar.2020.24-26.08.63

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  • Development of a negative-pressure-driven soft linear actuator for fixation part of wearable assistive devices

    Manabu Okui, Ryuto Enjo, Daisuke Inoue, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    Robots in Human Life- Proceedings of the 23rd International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines, CLAWAR 2020   23 - 30   2020.8

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    In the study, we propose a negative-pressure-driven soft linear actuator for the fixation part of an exoskeleton. In the study, a concept of the fixation part that is easy to wear with reliable force transmission is first proposed. Subsequently, a negative-pressure-driven soft linear actuator for the proposed fixation method is introduced and prototyped. Finally, basic characteristic experiments are conducted with a prototype. The results indicate that decreases in the pressure increase the actuator's contraction force and maximum contraction. It exhibits a large hysteresis that is approximately 50% at maximum contraction force. Increases in the width increase the contraction force. Increases in the height increase the force and rate of contraction.

    DOI: 10.13180/clawar.2020.24-26.08.30

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  • Wearable Air-Jet Force Feedback Device without Exoskeletal Structure and Its Application to Elastic Ball Rendering.

    Manabu Okui, Toru Masuda, T. Tamura, Yuki Onozuka, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proc. of The 2020 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM 2020)   276 - 281   2020.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM43001.2020.9158981

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  • Soil Transportation by Peristaltic Movement-Type Pump Inspired from the Lubrication System of the Large Intestine and Ceramic Art.

    H. Adachi, D. Matsui, K. Wakamatsu, D. Hagiwara, M. Ueda, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proc. of The 2020 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM 2020)   1056 - 1062   2020.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM43001.2020.9158954

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  • Variable Viscoelastic Joint Module with Built-in Pneumatic Power Source.

    Katsuki Machida, Seigo Kimura, Ryuji Suzuki, Kazuya Yokoyama, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proc. of The 2020 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM 2020)   1048 - 1055   2020.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM43001.2020.9158861

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  • Effect of penetration force on drilling efficiency for seabed drilling robot.

    Wataru Toyama, Keita Isaka, Kazuki Tsumura, Tomoki Watanabe, Manabu Okui, Hiroshi Yoshida, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proc. of The 2020 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM 2020)   1908 - 1913   2020.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM43001.2020.9158934

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  • Proposal for Pipeline-Shape Measurement Method Based on Highly Accurate Pipeline Length Measurement by IMU Sensor Using Peristaltic Motion Characteristics.

    Hiroto Sato, Yuki Mano, Fumio Ito, Takumi Yasui, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proc. of The 2020 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM 2020)   874 - 881   2020.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM43001.2020.9158972

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  • Mixing State Estimation of Peristaltic Continuous Mixing Conveyor with Distributed Sensing System Based on Soft Intestine Motion. Reviewed

    K. Wakamatsu, Katsuma Inoue, D. Hagiwara, H. Adachi, D. Matsui, S. Kurumaya, Rie Nishihama, Manabu Okui, Kohei Nakajima, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Taro Nakamura 0001

    2020 3rd IEEE International Conference on Soft Robotics, RoboSoft 2020   208 - 214   2020.5

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    © 2020 IEEE. A peristaltic continuous mixing conveyor that focuses on the mechanism of the intestine has been developed as a technology for the mixing and transport of a solid-liquid mixture and high viscosity fluids. The developed peristaltic continuous mixing conveyor succeeded in the mixing and transport of such mixtures in a previous study. A simple cyclic pattern is currently used as the movement pattern of the system, and the control method can be further improved. In this study, we aim to realize an intelligent mixing and generation of a conveyor pattern based on intestinal movement. The mixing state of content during activation was estimated through machine learning. The results from the time-series measurement data show that an internal mixing state in three units of the peristaltic continuous mixing conveyor was estimated.

    DOI: 10.1109/RoboSoft48309.2020.9116058

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  • Development of a locomotion robot using deformable dielectric elastomer actuator without pre-stretch Reviewed

    H. Kumamoto, T. Hayashi, Y. Yonehara, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering   11375   2020.4

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    This study proposes the development of a locomotion robot using a deformable dielectric elastomer for actuation without pre-stretch. Electroactive polymers (EAPs) that are driven by electrical stimulation have recently garnered attention. Among EAPs, dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) are focused herein. DEAs have a structure wherein a dielectric is sandwiched between elastic electrodes. The performance of the DEA depends on the relative permittivity, Young's modulus, and the applicable voltage of the dielectric material. DEAs are usually used with pre-stretching, because of the material properties of the dielectric, which requires a large stress in the initial stage of extension, and the increase in the displacement of DEAs with the application of pre-stretch. However, because rigid frames are generally used for prestretching, there are few DEA applications that utilize their flexibility. Therefore, we focused on slide-ring materials (SRMs) as new dielectric materials. SRMs are polymer materials in which the cross-linking points move freely, and having excellent properties as dielectrics for DEA applications. Thus, pre-stretching is not required, and applications utilizing the flexibility of DEAs is possible. In previous research, a bending unit that did not require pre-stretching was manufactured by attaching non-stretchable tape to one side of the DEA using an SRM as the dielectric material. In addition, a locomotion robot with a bending unit was developed, and it was confirmed that the robot achieved locomotion because of a phase difference between the units. However, the basic characteristics of the bending unit and locomotion robot were not discussed. Therefore, in this research, we measured the frequency characteristics of the bending unit alone and demonstrated the locomotion of the robot.

    DOI: 10.1117/12.2558422

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  • TasKi: Overhead Work Assistance Device with Passive Gravity Compensation Mechanism. Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Hirokazu Arakawa, Taro Watanabe, Shunya Fukuyama, Rie Nishihama, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura 0001

    J. Robotics Mechatronics   32 ( 1 )   138 - 148   2020.2

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    During overhead work, workers need to keep raising weights of approximately 2 to 4 kg with the muscular strength of their upper limbs, and the burden of this work is high. Therefore, we developed an assistive device, named TasKi, using a self-weighted compensation mechanism to reduce the burden on upper limbs during overhead work. It can compensate for upper limb weight using the force of a spring in various postures of the upper limbs, without a battery. In this study, to provide effective assistance to many users, we clarified the crucial assistance and parameter adjustment range of settings corresponding to physical differences. First, the assistive force value of TasKi to reduce the work burden of each user was confirmed via a subjective evaluation experiment and myoelectric potential-measurements. Next, we conducted a test survey of TasKi users and investigated the relationship between physique and the wearing feeling. According to the survey, 80% of the subjects provided favorable opinions on the assistive method used by TasKi. Finally, we had subjects of various physiques wear the device and investigated the relationship between physique and the wearing feeling with respect to shoulder joint movements. It was observed that the subjects with greater shoulder widths experienced difficulties when moving in the direction of internalexternal rotation because of the small size of TasKi. The influence on the ease of motion and perception of size was less in the direction of flexion-extension and adduction-abduction motions.

    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2020.p0138

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  • Soil Discharging Mechanism Utilizing Water Jetting to Improve Excavation Depth for Seabed Drilling Explorer. Reviewed

    Keita Isaka, Kazuki Tsumura, Tomoki Watanabe, Wataru Toyama, Manabu Okui, Hiroshi Yoshida, Taro Nakamura 0001

    IEEE Access   8   28560 - 28570   2020.2

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    DOI: 10.1109/ACCESS.2020.2972572

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  • Development of Assist Suit for Squat Lifting Support Considering Gait and Quantitative Evaluation by Three-Dimensional Motion Analysis. Reviewed

    Masashi Kashima, Hirokazu Arakawa, Seigo Kimura, Rie Nishihama, Kazuya Yokoyama, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura 0001

    J. Robotics Mechatronics   32 ( 1 )   209 - 219   2020.2

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    Globally, lower back pain is a serious problem. For workers, it not only causes health problems but also has social and economic influences. Lower back pain could be attributed to burden on people's waists when they handle heavy objects. Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare in Japan recommends squat lifting, a method of lifting objects with a smaller burden on waist. On the other hand, squat lifting is not commonly used because it requires deep bending of knees to lift an object, leading to a larger work load. Therefore, a leaf-spring type power assist suit for legs has been developed in order to assist squat lifting. However, if the fixing performance of a preceding machine was enhanced, a leaf spring could impede the bending of knee joints during gait motion. In the present study, we developed a power assist suit for legs using a slide mechanism. A leaf spring was chosen so as to meet a target assist torque determined by a motion analysis for lifting objects. In addition, we made a prototype machine with slide mechanism. EMG measurement of the thigh muscle during lifting actions using the prototype machine showed a decrease of up to 46%. It was also confirmed that a machine with slide mechanism could realize a more natural gait than a machine without it.

    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2020.p0209

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  • Grasp efficient powder transport performance of peristaltic motion type conveyor based on soft actuation. Reviewed

    Daiki Hagiwara, Kota Wakamatsu, Kyota Ashigaki, Kai Negishi, Shun Yoshihama, Koichi Kato, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   80 - 86   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. Powders are used in various devices, including printing presses. To prevent agglomeration, the powder in a printing press must be conveyed by a technique with low shear force and no temperature rise. The present study introduces a powder-conveyance robot based on peristaltic movements of the human intestinal tract, and evaluates it on the powder used in printing presses. The human intestinal tract is non-skeletal, soft and plays an important role as soft actuation. In our previous study, the peristaltic-motion type conveyor transported the powder at high speed (81.5g/s) without aggregation. However, the behavior of the inner tube after changing the characteristics and wavelength of the unit is unknown. This research investigates the conveyance amount and the inner-tube movement of a peristaltic-motion type conveyor unit operated at different wavelengths and operation intervals. By simultaneously mapping each parameter, we aim to increase the speed conveyance in future work.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9026224

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  • Actuatable Flexible Large Structure Using a Laminated Foam-based Soft Actuator. Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   74 - 79   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. Recently, various types of soft actuators and their applications have been studied in the search for alternatives to conventional robots. In particular, pneumatic soft actuators have the advantages of a light weight and high power. One of the applications of such soft actuators is fusion with flexible structures. However, because these actuatable flexible structures consist of rubber, silicone, or flexible resin, it is difficult for them to support their own weight, owing to the effect of the square-cube law in the case of an increasing size. We have developed actuatable flexible structures. LayerCAKE is a laminated open-cell and closed-cell foam structure, where cell foam is a lightweight and flexible material that can be used to realize large actuatable flexible structures. LayerCAKE is actuated using the concept that open- and closed-cell foams contract differently when they are vacuumed. In this paper, the design of a large LayerCAKE mechanism is described and tested. A large actuatable flexible structure of size approximately 1250 mm that bends in a vertical direction was realized.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9026003

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  • Noninflatable Pneumatic Artificial Muscle Requiring Low Space and Consumption Flow Rate. Reviewed

    Manabu Okui, Fumio Ito, Akihiro Kojima, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   495 - 499   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. Actuators known as pneumatic artificial muscles are superior for practical use because they do not require maintenance, are inexpensive, and can be assembled with a drive unit and an energy generation unit independently. However, because these actuators expand greatly in the radial direction when pressurized, one problem is that they occupy a large amount of space and consume a significant amount of flow. In this study, we propose a space-saving, constant-axis fiber-reinforced artificial muscle that does not expand and also takes advantage of the benefits of pneumatic artificial muscles. Hence, this paper reports on the driving principle of the proposed noninflatable pneumatic artificial muscle and the basic characteristics are then confirmed using a prototype.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9026201

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  • Fundamental characteristics for rendering elasticity of a force feedback method using elastic spring and magneto-rheological fluid clutch. Reviewed

    M. Ooba, Yuki Onozuka, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   1150 - 1155   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. Force feedback devices are attracting attention as a way to apply virtual and augmented reality to entertainment, sports, and rehabilitation. We previously developed a force feedback device using pneumatic artificial muscle and a magneto-rheological fluid clutch. However, problems occurred, such as an increase in the weight of the device and complications in the control system. To solve these problems, a new force feedback method using an elastic spring and a magneto-rheological fluid clutch was therefore proposed. In addition, the force feedback characteristics of the force feedback method were modeled. A 1-degree-of-freedom force feedback device using the new force feedback method was also developed. The model characteristics of the force feedback for rendering the elasticity using the device were confirmed experimentally.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9025927

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  • Dielectric elastomer actuator that can be deformed without pre-stretching and its application to flexible wave-generating device. Reviewed

    T. Hayashi, H. Kumamoto, Manabu Okui, Y. Yonehara, H. Takeuchi, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   1218 - 1223   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. We attempt to generate traveling waves by applying a dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA) with a sliding ring material (SRM). A normal DEA using silicon or acrylic rubber requires pre-stretching with a rigid frame to obtain a large displacement, owing to the material properties of the dielectric, which require a large stress to be applied at the initial stage of the extension. A DEA using an SRM does not need to be restricted by a rigid frame and can be expected to generate large displacements and complex motions while maintaining its flexibility. In this paper, we report the development of a traveling wave generator as an initial study. Through experiments, the developed DEA was confirmed to function as an actuator without pre-stretching. In the future, in addition to determining the optimum phase difference, frequency band, and shape of the constrained parts to increase the speed, we plan to develop a mobile robot utilizing a DEA traveling wave with a mechanism that would allow the units to overlap.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9026285

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  • Proposal for 3D-printed pneumatic artificial muscles -Effect of leaf spring stiffness on contraction amount and contraction force-. Reviewed

    Fumio Ito, Akihiro Kojima, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   1163 - 1167   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. In this paper, we describe the performance of a pneumatic artificial muscle integrally molded by a 3D printer that can mold materials with different stiffnesses.In the recent years, soft and hard materials can be integrally molded as the performances of 3D printers improve. For this reason, attention has been focused on the integral molding of actuators by using 3D printers. In this study, an artificial muscle is integrally molded by a state-of-the-art 3D printer, and the amount of contraction and contraction force generated are experimentally measured. In particular, the integrally molded artificial muscle formulated in this study is a pleated artificial muscle that does not require high material stretching performance. When the stiffness of the leaf spring material constituting the 3D printable artificial muscle is changed in a stepwise manner, the generated contraction amount and force were measured. From these measurement results, the usefulness of this actuator was confirmed by comparing the generated force with that of a pneumatic piston with the same inner diameter.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9026165

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  • Content Detection for Continuous and Efficient Production of Solid Rocket Fuel by Peristaltic Mixer. Reviewed

    K. Wakamatsu, D. Hagiwara, H. Adachi, Kyota Ashigaki, Akihiro Iwasaki, Yasuyuki Yamada, Hiroto Habu, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   471 - 476   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. In recent years, expectations for low-cost and high-frequency rocket launches for space exploration have increased. Solid fuel rockets are small, inexpensive, and easy to handle. However, in the production of solid fuel, the mixing process and the transportation process are separate batch processes, leading to an increase in maintenance costs and disposal costs. In addition, being a manual process, it is difficult to manufacture large amounts simultaneously in a safe method. The authors have developed a mixing and transportation device that simulates the movement of the intestinal tract by using an elastic duct and a low pneumatic drive. In addition, actual fuel production has been carried out in a mixing and transporting experiment using this device. The effectiveness of this device has been exhibited from the combustion test of the produced fuel. In this paper, we present a high-quality and efficient method of mixing and transporting solid propellant material. This is a mixing of solid and liquid achieved by peristaltic movement done in real-time by adjusting the mixing degree of the mixture inside the device. The degree of mixing is determined by the solid propellant's volume and viscosity change. Therefore, we first investigate whether the content volume can be detected when the rigid bodies with different volumes are inserted. Next, we focus on the change in the viscosity of the mixture that occurs during the mixing process. We also examine the viscosity of the contents when fluids having different viscosities are inserted.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9025893

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  • Clay Drilling Performance of Seabed Robotic Explorer Using Peristaltic Motion. Reviewed

    Keita Isaka, Kazuki Tsumura, Tomoki Watanabe, Wataru Toyama, Manabu Okui, Hiroshi Yoshida, Taro Nakamura 0001

    Proceedings of the 2020 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2020   1340 - 1347   2020.1

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    © 2020 IEEE. Mineral resources have been discovered on the bottom of the ocean; to utilize them, seabed soil samples must be obtained and analyzed. This study aimed to develop a seafloor robotic explorer that can excavate and gather samples of the seafloor soil. In our previous study, we developed a drilling robot named SEAVO II that could excavate 430 mm into the sand ground underwater. However, in the present study, the target to be excavated was the rare earth mud layer. Therefore, we examined the drilling properties specific to the underwater clay ground. In addition, a drilling experiment in the clay ground was conducted using SEAVO II. The results showed that SEAVO II could successfully dri11430 mm into the clay ground underwater.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII46433.2020.9026231

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  • Replicate the human joint viscosity variation during handshake movements with a handshake manipulator Reviewed

    K. Dai, R. Nishihama, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    session7-1, The 17th International Conference on Electrorheological Fluids and Magnetorheological Suspensions (ERMR2019)   2019.12

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  • Assistive method that controls joint stiffness and antagonized angle based on human joint stiffness characteristics and its application to an exoskeleton Reviewed

    Seigo Kimura, Ryuji Suzuki, Masashi Kashima, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura

    2019 19th International Conference on Advanced Robotics, ICAR 2019   553 - 559   2019.12

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    © 2019 IEEE. In this paper, we propose an assistance method that controls joint stiffness and the antagonized angle using variable elastic elements. The proposed system changes the stiffness and angle so that they correspond to the phase of movement and performs movement assistance in cooperation with the wearer. To achieve structural variability in the configuration of stiffness and the antagonized angle, we propose a joint structure in which the artificial muscle and tension spring are antagonistically arranged. While performing a movement, motion analysis was conducted to investigate the change in joint stiffness and antagonized angle. We confirmed that the proposed joint and human joint have the same tendency while in motion.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICAR46387.2019.8981664

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  • Proposal of a force feedback method using elastic spring and magneto-rheological clutch aimed to rendering friction and elasticity Reviewed

    M. Ooba, Y. Onozuka, M. Okui, T. Nakamura

    2019.12

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  • FEM Analysis of 3D Printable Pleated Pneumatic Artificial muscle Reviewed

    S. Kuriyama, I. Hisamichi, F. Ito, A. Kojima, M. Okui, T. Kojima, T. Nakamura, T. Tsuji

    Proceedings of the 10th TSME International Conference on Mechanical Engineering   1 ( 1 )   149 - 155   2019.12

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  • Development of a Peristaltic-Movement Duct-Cleaning Robot for Application to Actual Environment-Examination of Brush Type and Installation Method to Improve Cleaning Efficiency- Reviewed

    F Ito, T Kawaguchi, Y Yamada, T Nakamura

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   31 ( 6 )   781 - 793   2019.12

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  • Watanabe T., Fujiwara A., Tadami N., Isaka, K., Barthelemy M., Okui M., Sawada H., Kubota T., Nakamura T. Reviewed

    Development of Front-Actuation-Type Excavating Unit for Lunar Excavating Exploration Robot “LEAVO”

    32nd International Symposium on Space Technology and Sience (32nd ISTS)   2019.11

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  • Proposal of a Peristaltic Motion Type Duct Cleaning Robot for Traveling in a Flexible Pipe. Reviewed

    Fumio Ito, Takahiko Kawaguchi, Masashi Kamata, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    Proc. of The 2019 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS2019)   6614 - 6621   2019.11

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    DOI: 10.1109/IROS40897.2019.8967648

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  • Laminated foam-based soft actuator for actuatable flexible structure. Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    Proc. of The 2019 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS2019)   4359 - 4364   2019.11

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    DOI: 10.1109/IROS40897.2019.8967522

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  • Three-dimensional mapping of pipeline from inside images using earthworm robot equipped with camera

    Akira Oyama, Hirotaka Iida, Yonghoon Ji, Kazunori Umeda, Yuki Mano, Takumi Yasui, Taro Nakamura

    IFAC-PapersOnLine   52   87 - 90   2019.10

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    Copyright © 2019. The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. In this paper, we propose a method to generate a 3D map in the narrow pipeline from inside images captured from a camera mounted on earthworm robot. Pipes that have reached the end of their useful life cause leaks and pits in the road; thus, it is necessary to inspect the inside of the pipe. In order to inspect the inside of the pipe, images in the pipeline are converted to development images and motion estimation of the camera is performed using the optical flow. Finally, the development images are connected to generate a 3D map.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.ifacol.2019.11.053

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  • Evaluation experiment of squat motion with variable viscoelastic assistive suit “Airsist I”

    Ryuji Suzuki, Manabu Okui, Shingo Iikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    IFAC-PapersOnLine   52 ( 22 )   73 - 77   2019.10

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    Copyright © 2019. The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. In this study, an experiment is conducted to evaluate a squat motion while using the wearable variable viscoelastic assistive suit “Airsist I,” and the assistive effect of the suit is confirmed. Wearable assistive suits help in reducing the burden on laborers. Airsist I was developed in a previous study, based on the characteristics of variable viscoelasticity. In addition, a variable viscoelastic control strategy was proposed. However, an evaluation has not been performed to confirm the assistive effect of Airsist I. Therefore, this study reports on the confirmation of the assistive effect of the variable viscoelastic suit Airsist I.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.ifacol.2019.11.050

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  • Path rendering and velocity restriction with welding-assisting device composed of magnetorheological brakes Reviewed

    M. Okui, R. Suzuki, S. Morita, T. Nakamura

    IFAC-PapersOnLine   52 ( 22 )   108 - 111   2019.10

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    Copyright © 2019. The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. In the shipbuilding industry, welding is one of the forms of nonautomated heavy labor, and the welding operator is required to weld indeterminate objects in a narrow working space. Therefore, it is difficult to use large equipment, such as industrial robots. In addition, it is not easy to perform high-quality welding, because tracing a welding line accurately at a constant speed requires a long training period. In this research, the aim was to develop a welding assist device that can be applied to a welding environment. The proposed device fixes to the welding surface by magnetic force and assists semiautomatic welding with a magnetorheological (MR) brake. MR brakes have a sufficient response speed compared with powder brakes, have a large output weight ratio, and are considered to be suitable for welding assistance. In this work, a strategy for control of path rendering and speed restriction by MR brakes is proposed. Its effectiveness was confirmed by experiments with a prototype.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.ifacol.2019.11.057

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  • Rendering friction and viscosity using a wearable 4 degrees of freedom force feedback device with magnetorheological fluid clutches and pneumatic artificial muscles. Reviewed

    Yuki Onozuka, Minoru Oba, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2019 - 45th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society, Lisbon, Portugal, October 14-17, 2019   705 - 710   2019.10

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    Using a head-mounted display, users can immerse themselves in virtual reality space and users can via the visual recognition of virtual objects. However, users do not experience the same haptic perception when they interact with these objects, that they do with actual objects. Force feedback devices can render haptic perception. They are classified into desktop and wearable types. A wearable 1 degree of freedom force feedback device using magnetorheological fluid brake, magnetorheological clutches, and pneumatic artificial muscles has been previously developed and it was confirmed that the device can render elasticity, friction, and viscosity. In addition, a wearable 4 degrees of freedom force feedback device using magnetorheological fluid clutches and pneumatic artificial muscles that can render elasticity was also previously developed. However, it was not established that the device could render friction, and viscosity using magnetorheological fluid clutches and pneumatic artificial muscles. In this report, it is confirmed that such a device can render friction and viscosity using magnetorheological fluid clutches and pneumatic artificial muscles without the need for magnetorheological fluid brake.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON.2019.8927514

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  • Proposal of bellows-integrated robot for improving flexibility and sealability of peristaltic motion robot Reviewed

    F. Ito, T. Kawaguchi, Y. Yamada, and T. Nakamura

    in Proceedings of 22nd International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR)   37 - 44   2019.8

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  • Soil discharging mechanism for seafloor drilling robot Reviewed

    K. Isaka, N. Tadami, A. Fujiwara, T. Watanabe, M. Okui, H. Yoshida, M. Sugesawa and T. Nakamura

    in Proceedings of 22nd International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR)   219 - 225   2019.8

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  • Motion judgment algorithm based on joint angular velocity with variable viscoelastic assistive suit Reviewed

    R. Suzuki, S. Kimura, M. Okui, R. Nishihama, and T. Nakamura

    in Proceedings of 22nd International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR)   117 - 124   2019.8

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  • Development of joint attachment for passing curved pipe of peristaltic motion robot for in-pipe inspection Reviewed

    T.Yasui,Y.Mano,F.Ito,T.Nakamura

    in Proceedings of 22nd International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR)   45 - 52   2019.8

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  • Proposal of Passive Type Power Assist Suit for Squat Lifting Considering Walking*. Reviewed

    Masashi Kashima, Hirokazu Arakawa, Seigo Kimura, Rie Nishihama, Kazuya Yokoyama, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura

    in Proceedings of Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM)   114 - 119   2019.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2019.8868604

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  • Straight-Fiber-Type Artificial Muscle Deformation Under Pressurization Reviewed

    Akihiro Kojima, Manabu Okui, Itsuki Hisamichi, Tomoaki Tsuji, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters   4 ( 3 )   2592 - 2598   2019.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/lra.2019.2902016

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  • Research of human-robot handshakes under variable stiffness conditions. Reviewed

    Kejia Dai, Yage Liu, Manabu Okui, Rie Nishihama, Taro Nakamura

    4th IEEE International Conference on Advanced Robotics and Mechatronics, ICARM 2019, Toyonaka, Japan, July 3-5, 2019   744 - 749   2019.7

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    In this study, we made the assumption that the feeling of a firm handshake is related to the stiffness of the elbow joint and we performed handshake experiments under variable stiffness conditions to verify the assumption. EMG signals were recorded to be used as an evaluation. Then human-robot handshake experiments were performed utilizing a handshake manipulator proposed in the previous research. The joint of the manipulator was driven by antagonized artificial muscles, which are considered to be soft actuators designed to mimic the movement of real human muscles. The muscle activations of the subject were compared when the subject shook hand with the experimenter and the manipulator. And it has been demonstrated that even though the subject was not aware of the experiment conditions, the muscle activations are higher in the firm handshake condition in both human-human handshake and human robot handshake experiments, which indicated that firmness of handshakes are related to the stiffness of the joint and the EMG signals can used as an evaluation method.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICARM.2019.8833897

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  • Development of Seafloor Drilling Robot based on Earthworm Locomotion:—Study on Gripping Torque Improvement and Drilling Torque Reduction— Reviewed

    Isaka Keita, Tadami Naoaki, Fujiwara Ami, Watanabe Tomoki, Sugesawa Makoto, Yamada Yasuyuki, Yoshida Hiroshi, Nakamura Taro

    Journal of the Robotics Society of Japan   37 ( 4 )   330 - 340   2019.7

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    &lt;p&gt;Seabed mineral resources were found on the bottom of the ocean. To utilize these resources, it is necessary to collect and analyze samples. Therefore, we intend to develop a seafloor robotic explorer that can excavate and sample the seafloor soil. In a previous study, we developed a drilling robot and experimentally demonstrated the ability of this robot to produce curved boreholes with a turning radius of 1,670[mm], and a depth of 613[mm] in land environment. However, an underwater excavation has not been successful. It is necessary to improve the gripping torque and to reduce the drilling resistance for underwater excavation. In this paper, we present a propulsion unit with the setae that imitates an earthworm&#039;s setae. As a result, the drilling robot succeeded in drilling into the ground while underwater. In addition, we aim to reduce the drilling resistance. We adjusted the penetration speed and the rotational speed of the drilling robot based on the drilling properties of underwater ground. We also consider the shape of the earth auger to reduce the drilling resistance. As a result, we succeeded in reducing the drilling resistance, which both lowered the excavation energy by 39.2% and reduced the completion time. &lt;/p&gt;

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  • Development of Underwater Drilling Robot Based on Earthworm Locomotion. Reviewed

    Keita Isaka, Kazuki Tsumura, Tomoki Watanabe, Wataru Toyama, Makoto Sugesawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Hiroshi Yoshida, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE Access   7   103127 - 103141   2019.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/ACCESS.2019.2930994

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  • Ralationship between Blade Shape and Locomotive Performance of Blade-Type Crawler based on Wharf Roach Locomotion for Lunar Surface Exploration" Reviewed

    Haruka Adachi, Ami Fujiwara, Yasuyuki Yamada, Yoshihito Kazama, Yasuharu Kunii, Taro Nakamura

    32nd International Symposium on Space Technology and Sience (32nd ISTS)   2019.6

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  • Packaging of Mixed Materials in Peristaltic Mixer for Solid Propellant Production Reviewed

    Kota Wakamatsu, Daiki Hagiwara, Haruka Adachi, Kyota Ashigaki, Akihiro Iwasaki, Yasuyuki Yamada, Hiroto Habu, Taro Nakamura

    32nd International Symposium on Space Technology and Sience (32nd ISTS)   2019.6

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  • Development of Front-Actuation-Type Excavating Unit for Lunar Excavating Exploration Robot “LEAVO” Reviewed

    Tomoki Watanabe, Ami Fujiwara, Naoaki Tadami, Keita Isaka, Megan Barthelemy, Manabu Okui, Hirotaka Sawada, Takashi Kubota, Taro Nakamura

    32nd International Symposium on Space Technology and Sience (32nd ISTS)   19 ( 2 )   211 - 216   2019.6

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    DOI: 10.2322/tastj.19.211

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  • Variable viscoelasticity handshake manipulator for physical human-robot interaction using artificial muscle and MR brake Reviewed

    KEJIA DAI, Yage Liu, Manabu Okui, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    Smart Materials and Structures   28 ( 6 )   2019.5

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    In this study, a handshake manipulator with variable viscoelastic joints was proposed. The variable viscoelastic joint system comprised of antagonized artificial muscles and a magneto-rheological fluid brake. This joint system resembles the characteristic of real human joint. The objective of this study is to evaluate the proposed manipulator's effectiveness in the research of human-robot physical interaction and to verify that by adjusting the viscosity and stiffness of the joint it is possible to create handshakes with different feelings. In this research two sets of experiments were conducted; the first set of experiments was to conducted on the manipulator alone in order to test the performance of the manipulator. And the second set of experiments was the subjective evaluation of the manipulator when subjects shook hand with the manipulator under variable viscosity and stiffness conditions. The results of these experiments indicated that the manipulator was suitable for doing research on human-robot handshake, and the variable viscosity and stiffness of the elbow joint did create distinctive feelings to the subjects.

    DOI: 10.1088/1361-665X/ab0d9b

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  • Delta-Type 4-DOF Force-Feedback Device Composed of Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and Magnetorheological Clutch and its Application to Lid Opening Reviewed

    M. Okui, M. Kobayashi, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    2019 Smart Mater. Struct   2019.4

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  • ファッション性と快適性の両立を目指したハイヒールの検討 Reviewed

    山田泰之, 西濵里英, 中村太郎

    日本靴医学会機関誌, 靴の医学   32 ( 2 )   2019.3

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  • Measurement of strain distribution of dielectric elastomer actuator with plural pairs of electrodes via the image correlation method Reviewed

    T. Hayashi, M. Okui, Y. Yonehara, T. Nakamura

    SPIE, Smart Structures Nondestructive Evaluation, 10966-31   10966   2019.3

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    A dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA) is a soft actuator with low manufacturing cost and high energy efficiency. The structure of a DEA consists of a dielectric material interlayered with elastic electrodes, and DEA expands when an electric field is applied. The degree of freedom of movement of the DEA can be increased by devising the electrode arrangement in DEA. The performance of DEA is determined by permittivity, Young's modulus, and applicable electric field. Material properties including hysteresis loss are also important when a DEA is used as a sensor or high precision actuator. Generally, silicon and acrylic rubbers are used as the dielectric layer. This study focused on the use of a slidering material (SRM) as a more suitable dielectric for DEA than silicone and acrylic rubbers in terms of its dielectric constant and hysteresis loss. In a previous study, a DEA was developed using SRM as a dielectric, and the image correlation method (ICM) was applied to measure the strain distributions in a two-dimensional plane and the basic characteristics of DEA with one pair of electrodes. Here, the strain distribution was measured when the electrodes of the DEA were segmented into several pairs as the next step in the investigation of its basic characteristics. Patterns of electrode arrangements and the amount of DEA prestretching were changed, and strain distribution was measured using ICM.

    DOI: 10.1117/12.2514194

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  • Strain-induced crystallization to prolong the lifetime of pneumatic artificial muscles Reviewed

    A.Kojima, M.Okui, I,Hisamichi, N.Tadami, T.Tsuji, T.Nakamura

    SPIE, Smart Structures Nondestructive Evaluation, 10965-30   10965   2019.3

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    Various types of soft actuators have been developed for application in wearable movement-assist devices or soft robots. The authors have developed a straight-fiber-reinforced pneumatic rubber artificial muscle (SF-ARM). The SFARM is composed of rubber that is reinforced with fibers aligned only in the axial direction. When air pressure is applied to the SF-ARM, the reinforced fibers limit the rubber expansion to the radial direction so that the muscle contracts in the axial direction. The SF-ARM contracts by 38% at maximum, and this contraction rate exceeds the contraction rate of the McKibben artificial muscle. However, the SF-ARM is not well-suited for practical use because the strain on the SF-ARM while it is actuated is large which can cause fatigue failure of the rubber. This study focuses on suppressing the growth of cracks using strain-induced crystallization of the natural rubber, to prolong the lifetime of the SF-ARM. Natural rubbers form a crystalline layer in the direction perpendicular to the direction of stretching. This crystal layer effectively suppresses the growth of cracks in the SF-ARM when under strain. Deliberately developing a crystal layer should extend the lifetime of the SF-ARM. First, this study confirmed the formation of a crystal layer under extension of natural rubber (NR) and styrene butadiene rubber (SBR) using wide-angle X-ray diffraction measurements. Next, the strain concentration near the crack was analyzed using finite element method simulations. Finally, fatigue-life tests were conducted with SF-ARMs made of NR and SBR.

    DOI: 10.1117/12.2513246

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  • Study on Drilling Resistance Reduction of a Seafloor Robotic Explorer Based on the Drilling Properties of Underwater Ground. Reviewed

    K. Isaka, N. Tadami, A. Fujiwara,T, Watanabe,M. Sugesawa, Y. Yamada, H, Yoshida,T. Nakamura

    IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2019, Paris, France, January 14-16, 2019   718 - 723   2019.1

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    DOI: 10.1109/SII.2019.8700347

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  • Development of Negative Pressure Adsorption Type Traveling-wave Wall-climbing Robot for Aircraft Inspection and Running Experiment

    萩原大輝, 只見侃朗, 天川貴文, 山田泰之, 山田泰之, 中村太郎

    計測自動制御学会論文集   55 ( 1 )   59‐67(J‐STAGE)   2019.1

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    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr.55.59

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  • Deformation Measurement of Dielectric Elastomer using Slide Ring Material on a 2-D Plane. Reviewed

    T. Hayashi, M. Okui, Y. Yonehara, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2019, Paris, France, January 14-16, 2019   712 - 717   2019.1

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    Dielectric elastomer actuator (DEA) is a soft actuator with low manufacturing cost and high energy efficiency; it expands when an electric field is applied. The structure of DEA comprises a dielectric material interlayered with elastic electrodes similar to a sandwich. The performance of DEA is determined by the material of the dielectric layer, which is generally silicon or acrylic rubber. This study focused on investigating the characteristics and various applications of slide ring material (SRM) as a dielectric. SRM is more suitable for use as a dielectric of DEA as compared to silicone and acrylic rubbers in terms of the dielectric constant and hysteresis loss. Several measurement methods of existing DEAs measure only uniaxial deformation. However, the actual DEA strain distribution is not completely uniform. In addition, obtaining the two-dimensional (2D) strain distribution leads to a better understanding of the lifetime and performance of DEA as DEA deforms in 2D practical applications. Therefore, this study measured the strain on the DEA, while changing the load, applied voltage, and number of layers, using the image correlation method, which is a 2D planar measurement method. This measurement confirmed the two-dimensionally spreading strain distribution. The relationship between the stress, strain, and number of DEA layers was also obtained.

    DOI: 10.1109/SII.2019.8700353

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  • Proposed Pneumatic Artificial Skin Muscle that Provides Assistance in Daily Activities. Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2019, Paris, France, January 14-16, 2019   2019 ( SII )   104 - 111   2019.1

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    DOI: 10.1109/SII.2019.8700416

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  • Soil transport experiment with a multi-unit peristaltic transport machine for compact automatic transportation of excavated soil. Reviewed

    D. Hagiwara, Kyota Ashigaki, K. Wkamatsu, M. Ueda, Yasuyuki Yamada, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration, SII 2019, Paris, France, January 14-16, 2019   724 - 728   2019.1

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    DOI: 10.1109/SII.2019.8700462

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  • MRブレーキと弾性バネを用いたパッシブ型可変粘弾性提示装置の開発

    大場 実, 小野塚 祐樹, 奥井 学, 中村 太郎

    フルードパワーシステム講演会講演論文集 = The proceedings Conference of Japan Fluid Power System Society   71 - 73   2019

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  • Prolonging the fatigue life of the Straight fiber type pneumatic artificial muscle by the strain-induced crystallization of Natural rubber Reviewed

    KOJIMA Akihiro, OKUI Manabu, HISAMICHI Itsuki, TADAMI Naoaki, TSUJI Tomoaki, NAKAMURA Taro

    TRANSACTIONS OF THE JAPAN FLUID POWER SYSTEM SOCIETY   50 ( 2 )   46 - 52   2019

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    <p>Pneumatic rubber artificial muscle is attracting attention as an actuator having high cooperativeness with human because of its feature of being flexible and lightweight. The authors have developed Straight fiber type pneumatic artificial muscle (SF-ARM), which is a high power, highly displaced pneumatic rubber artificial muscle. Although SF-ARM has excellent contraction characteristics, it has a problem of short fatigue life. Therefore, in this study, focusing on strain-induced crystallization of natural rubber, the fatigue life of SF-ARM has been extended. First, strain-induced crystallization of natural rubber were confirmed by wide angle X-ray diffraction. Next, analysis of strain concentration in the vicinity of the crack was performed by the finite element method. Finally, a fatigue life test of SF-ARM was carried out to confirm the effect of prolonging the fatigue life by using strain-induced crystallization.</p>

    DOI: 10.5739/jfps.50.46

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  • Road Ability of In-pipe Mobile Robot Equipped with Flexible Brush Wheel Reviewed

    TADAMI Naoaki, ITO Fumio, KAMATA Masashi, KAWAGUCHI Takahiko, YAMADA Yasuyuki, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers   55 ( 11 )   692 - 699   2019

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    <p>There are many pipe-systems such as a water pipe, a gas pipe and a ventilation duct in a plant, factory and house. The inspection of these pipe-systems is necessary to prevent accidents and malfunctions. However, many pipes are very narrow, and it is difficult for people to inspect directly. In this study, a brush wheel type robot which has the simple and compact drive mechanism and does not need large space to move, is proposed. When moving inside of a pipe, this robot uses the elastic force of a brush wheel to hold the robot in pipe. Additionally, the robot can move a vertical pipe and a curved pipe by replacing the brush wheels. This paper reports the robot's structure, the drive mechanism, the operation principle, the prototype evaluation and three type pipe running experiments.</p>

    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr.55.692

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  • Auxiliary Effect Verification of Power Assist Suit "AB-Wear" for Assisting the Lower Back using the Deflection of a Flat Spring

    H. Arakawa, S. Mohri, K. Yokoyama, Y. Yamada, I. Kikutani, T. Nakamura

    Proc. of The 2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems(IROS2018)   2018.10

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  • Blade-Type Crawler Capable of Running on the Surface of Water as Bio-Inspired by a Basilisk Lizard. Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, IROS 2018, Madrid, Spain, October 1-5, 2018   2018 ( IROS )   1 - 9   2018.10

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    DOI: 10.1109/IROS.2018.8594397

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  • Proposal of Non-Rotating Joint Drive Type Power Assist Suit for Lower Limbs Considering Squat Lifting. Reviewed

    Hirokazu Arakawa, Shun Mohri, Yasuyuki Yamada, Kazuya Yokoyama, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura

    JRM   30 ( 5 )   752 - 761   2018.10

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    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2018.p0752

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  • Material Properties of Fiber-Reinforced Rubber Tube Reviewed

    I.Hisamichi, A. Kojima, S. Kobayashi, M. Okui, T. Nakamura, T. Tsuji

    The 6th Asian Coference on Mechanics of Functional Materials and Structures (ACMFMS2018)   2018.10

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  • Underwater Excavation by Excavation Robot Equipped with Propulsion Unit Based on Earthworm Setae Reviewed

    Naoaki Tadami, Keita Isaka, Toyoharu Nakatake, Ami Fujiwara, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura, Makoto Sugesawa, Hiroshi Yoshida

    Proceedings of the 2018 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics (ROBIO 2018)   2018.10

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  • Development of High-Speed Type Peristaltic Crawling Robot for Long-Distance and Complex-Line Sewer Pipe Inspection. Reviewed

    Yuki Mano, Ryutaro Ishikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, IROS 2018, Madrid, Spain, October 1-5, 2018   2018 ( IROS )   8177 - 8183   2018.10

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    DOI: 10.1109/IROS.2018.8593436

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Crawling Motion Type Duct Cleaning Robot Compatible with Cleaning Efficiency and Running Speed by Cleaning joint

    T. Kawaguchi, Y. Tanise, M. Kamata, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    Proc. of The 21th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR 2018), Panama, Panamacity   2018.9

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  • Proposal of Propulsion Unit Based on Earthworm Setae for Underwater Excavation Robot

    TADAMI Naoaki, ISAKA Keita, NAKATAKE Toyoharu, FUJIWARA Ami, YAMADA Yasuyuki, NAKAMURA Taro, SUGESAWA Makoto, YOSHIDA Hiroshi

    The Proceedings of JSME annual Conference on Robotics and Mechatronics (Robomec)   2018   2P1-A07   2018.9

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    In this paper, we developed a propulsion unit with bristles imitating the setae of earthworm. This propulsion unit is installed in SEAVO: sub-seafloor excavation robot. To realize underwater excavation by SEAVO, it is necessary to move the soft and fluid sedimentary layer of seafloor surface. As a solution, we focused on the setae of earthworm which live in mud and soft soil. Then, we developed the propulsion unit with bristles imitating the earthworm's setae and measured the performance of the setae-attached propulsion unit. Comparing the measurement result of the bristlesattached propulsion unit with the previous propulsion unit, we confirmed the usefulness of the bristles-attached propulsion unit.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmermd.2018.2p1-a07

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  • Proposal of air compressing device using walking vibration energy regeneration for pneumatic driven assistive device

    Manabu Okui, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    Robotics Transforming the Future - Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines, CLAWAR 2018   36 - 43   2018.9

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    Pneumatically driven wearable assistive devices for walking have been developed recently. These devices can achieve flexible assistance without control; however, they require large and heavy air compressors for activation. In this study, a pneumatically driven source using vibration energy regeneration from walking was developed. The aim was to activate the cylinder using vibrations due to walking and compressed air. A mass element, which is connected to a human body via a spring and a cylinder, vibrates along with the human gait cycle. Next, a prototype was developed and tested. In walking experiments, stored pressure was measured at several gait cycles and masses for comparison. Results indicate that the gait cycle period and masses affect the stored pressure; the highest pressure recorded was 0.08 MPa.

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  • Distributed Driving System for The Excavation Unit of a Lunar Earthworm-Type “LEAVO” Excavation Robot

    A. Fujiwara, T. Nakatake, T. Tadami, K. Isaka, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura, H. Sawada, T. Kubota

    Proc. of The 21th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR 2018), Panama, Panamacity   2018.9

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  • 空気圧人工筋肉を用いた腸管の蠕動運動を模擬したポンプの開発と応用 (特集 バイオミメティクスにみられるフルードパワー)

    山田 泰之, 中村 太郎

    フルードパワーシステム = Journal of the Japan Fluid Power System Society : 日本フルードパワーシステム学会誌   49 ( 5 )   216 - 218   2018.9

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  • Hollow Pneumatic Artificial Muscles with Air Cylinder: Improvement for compatibility of high durability and high efficiency. Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Akihiro Kojima, Yutaro Higashi, Manabu Okui, Taro Nakamura

    7th IEEE International Conference on Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics, BioRob 2018, Enschede, The Netherlands, August 26-29, 2018   2018 ( BioRob )   865 - 870   2018.8

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    DOI: 10.1109/BIOROB.2018.8487219

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  • Proposal of Non-rotating Joint Drive Type Mechanical Assist Device for Squat Lifting by using Leaf and Compression Spring

    H. Arakawa, S. Mohri, K. Yokoyama, Y. Yamada, I. Kikutani, T. Nakamura

    IEEE Conference Proceedings   2018 ( BioRob )   2018.8

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  • Proposal of One-inch Pipe Inspection Robot "PI-RO I". Reviewed

    Masashi Kamata, Kana Tachibana, Yuki Tanise, Takahiko Kawaguchi, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    7th IEEE International Conference on Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics, BioRob 2018, Enschede, The Netherlands, August 26-29, 2018   2018 ( BioRob )   1315 - 1320   2018.8

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    DOI: 10.1109/BIOROB.2018.8487902

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  • Proposal of A Variable Viscoelastic Control Strategy for an Assistive Suit with MR Brakes and Straight-Fiber-Type Artificial Muscles

    R. Suzuki, M. Okui, S. Iikawa, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    2018.7

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  • Development of Contraction Force Control System of Peristaltic Crawling Robot for Sewer Pipe Inspection. Reviewed

    Yuki Mano, Ryutaro Ishikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2018 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM 2018, Auckland, New Zealand, July 9-12, 2018   2018 ( AIM )   936 - 941   2018.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2018.8452392

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  • An Exoskeleton Type 4-DOF Force Feedback Device Using Magnetorheological Fluid Clutches and Artificial Muscles. Reviewed

    Yuki Onozuka, Ryo Suzuki, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2018 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM 2018, Auckland, New Zealand, July 9-12, 2018   2018 ( AIM )   869 - 874   2018.7

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    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2018.8452696

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  • Water jetting excavation and consideration of earth auger shape to reduce drilling torque for seabed robotic explorer Reviewed

    K. Isaka, N. Tadami, A. Fujiwara, T. Nakatake, M. Sugesawa, Y. Yamada, H. Yosida, T. Nakamura

    The 2018 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM)   2018   2P1-B09   2018.7

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    Marine resources exist on the seabed, and sampling is useful for a detailed study of these resources. In general, a pipe-shaped sampler is used to collect marine resources for investigation. However, this is inefficient for investigating sediments, which are widely distributed, because the sampling range is limited to the pipe penetration part. A wide area exploration can be made possible by deploying multiple robots to autonomously search beneath the seabed. In a previous study, we developed a seabed robotic explorer called "SEAVO" and experimentally demonstrated the ability of SEAVO to produce curved boreholes with a turning radius of 1.67 m, and a depth of 613 mm, in the land environment. However, underwater excavation has not been successful. Reduction in the drilling torque is necessary for underwater excavation. In this paper, we propose a water jetting excavation method to reduce the drilling torque.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmermd.2018.2p1-b09

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  • Soil Transport Experiment by Peristaltic Transport Machine for Compact Automatic Transportation System of Excavated Soil Reviewed

    Kyota Ashigaki, Daiki Hagiwara, Kai Negishi, Shun Yoshihama, Masahiro Ueda, TAKENAKA Corp, Hiroto Habu (JAX, Taro Nakamura

    The 2018 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM)   2018.7

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  • Delta Type 4 DOF Force Feedback Device Composed of Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and MR Clutches and Its Application to Lid Opening Operation

    M. Okui, M. Kobayashi, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    2018.7

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  • Development of Both-Ends Supported Flexible Auger for Lunar Earthworm-Type Excavation Robot LEAVO Reviewed

    A. Fujiwara, T. Nakatake, N. Tadami, K. Isaka, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura, H. Sawada, T. Kubota

    The 2018 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics(AIM), WCT3.4   2018   2A2-A08   2018.7

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    For lunar underground explorations, we have developed lunar earthworm-type excavation robot “LEAVO” and achieved vertical excavation with it. Then, we now wrestle about curving excavation to make the LEAVO be able to collect some samples in particular layer efficiently. To achieve the curving excavation, it is necessary for the LEAVO's excavation unit to excavate target diameter borehole certainly because the LEAVO become to be inoperable in the excessively large or small diameter borehole. To excavate target diameter borehole certainty, in this paper, we develop the “both-ends supported flexible auger” as the LEAVO's flexible excavation unit and carry out its characteristics test. Moreover, we confirm its usefulness in the axis runout check and excavation test.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmermd.2018.2a2-a08

    DOI: 10.2322/tastj.19.211_references_DOI_4nb5xJuaOYkd4ciEK3vIF4vm7C9

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  • Development of a Wearable 4-DOF Force Feedback Device for Upper-Limb Using MR Clutches and Pneumatic Artificial Muscles

    Y. Onozuka, R. Suzuki, M. Okui, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    2018.7

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  • Proposal of Welding Assisting Device Using Magneto Rheological Brake

    M. Okui, R. Suzuki, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    2018.7

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  • ミミズの蠕動運動を模倣した圧送管内検査用ロボットの開発 (「月刊下水道」創刊40周年記念特集 編集部が選ぶ 魅せたい下水道) -- (知ってほしい! こんな下水道)

    眞野 雄貴, 中村 太郎

    月刊下水道 = Journal of sewerage, monthly   41 ( 7 )   45 - 50   2018.6

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  • 軸方向繊維強化型空気圧式ゴム人工筋肉の長寿命高効率化のための形状検討 Reviewed

    山田泰之, 小島明寛, 奥井学, 中村太郎

    計測自動制御学会論文集   54 ( 6 )   2018.6

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  • Morphological change in peristaltic crawling motion of a narrow pipe inspection robot inspired by earthworm’s locomotion Reviewed

    M. Kamata, S. Yamazaki, Y. Tanise, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    Advanced Robotics   32 ( 7 )   386 - 397   2018.4

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    Infrastructure pipes require inspection in order to prevent accidents. However, it is difficult to inspect a 1-in-diameter gas pipe because it is long, narrow and complicated. Therefore, an earthworm-type robot was developed to inspect this 1-in pipe. The robot moved by peristaltic crawling with pneumatic artificial muscles and displayed its suitability as a 1-in pipe inspection robot in experiments. However, its speed was extremely slow to be practically utilized. A major cause for this is the small distance covered in a single motion of the robot. Therefore, in this study, we developed an axial extension actuator to increase the moving distance of the robot in a single motion. Furthermore, we installed this new actuator on our robot and made it possible for the robot to change the morphological motion in peristaltic crawling. The experiments with straight and elbow pipes ascertained the importance of morphological change in peristaltic crawling for increasing the speed of the robot. Moreover, in a continuous elbow pipe, the velocity of the proposed robot was 5.5 mm/s, which is 1.3 times faster than that of the conventional robot. Consequently, we confirmed that the speed of the proposed robot was sufficiently fast for inspecting a 1-in pipe.

    DOI: 10.1080/01691864.2017.1417158

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  • Novel feedforward controller for straight-fiber-type artificial muscle based on an experimental identification model. Reviewed

    Ryuji Suzuki, Manabu Okui, Shingo Iikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE International Conference on Soft Robotics, RoboSoft 2018, Livorno, Italy, April 24-28, 2018   2018 ( RoboSoft )   31 - 38   2018.4

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    DOI: 10.1109/ROBOSOFT.2018.8404893

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  • Development of Hybrid Pneumatic Power Source based on Gas Compressing Methods Evaluation Reviewed

    奥井学, 名倉裕貴, 山田泰之, 中村太郎

    日本ロボット学会誌   36 ( 3 )   233 - 241   2018.4

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    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.36.233

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  • Hybrid Pneumatic Source Based on Evaluation of Air Compression Methods for Portability Reviewed

    Manabu Okui, Yuki Nagura, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION LETTERS   3 ( 2 )   819 - 826   2018.4

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    This letter proposes a novel hybrid pneumatic power source for the development of a portable pneumatic source. The hybrid pneumatic source achieves a lightweight system by combining two pneumatic sources: one that can generate high pressure/small suppliable flow and one that can generate small pressure/large suppliable flow. In this study, first, the mobility of various pneumatic sources is evaluated by experiments. The evaluation methods involve a small battery-driven compressor, tank, phase change of material, and chemical reaction. From the results, it is clarified that there is no best method because each method has advantages and disadvantages. Then, a hybrid pneumatic source utilizing the result is proposed. Finally, a prototype that has phase change of CO2 and dimethyl ether as a pneumatic source is developed, and the effectiveness of the proposed method is confirmed by experiments.

    DOI: 10.1109/LRA.2018.2792145

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  • Prolonging the lifetime of straight-fiber-type pneumatic rubber artificial muscle by shape consideration and material development. Reviewed

    Akihiro Kojima, Manabu Okui, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE International Conference on Soft Robotics, RoboSoft 2018, Livorno, Italy, April 24-28, 2018   2018 ( RoboSoft )   188 - 195   2018.4

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    DOI: 10.1109/ROBOSOFT.2018.8404918

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  • MRブレーキと空気圧人工筋肉を用いた装着型1自由度力覚提示装置の開発と拡張現実空間での評価 Reviewed

    鈴木 遼, 江川 正和, 山田 泰之, 中村 太郎

    日本バーチャルリアリティ学会論文誌   23 ( 1 )   45 - 54   2018.3

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    DOI: 10.18974/tvrsj.23.1_45

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  • Fundamental characteristic of novel actuation system with variable viscoelastic joints and magneto-rheological clutches for human assistance

    Manabu Okui, Shingo Iikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures   29 ( 1 )   82 - 90   2018.1

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    In this study, a variable viscoelastic joint system with a clutch for human assistance was proposed. The variable viscoelastic joint system comprised antagonized artificial muscles and magneto-rheological fluid brake. This system enabled the human assisting device, such as exoskeletons, to retain structural softness when compared with the existing devices driven by motor and reduction gear, which could only achieve superficial softness. In addition, a clutch system that provided high back-drivability to the wearer by structurally separating the device from the wearer was proposed. As an initial step in designing the human assisting device, a prototype with the proposed variable viscoelastic joint system for knee assistance is developed. Also, its control method was developed. Furthermore, experiments were conducted to confirm the influence of the proposed viscoelastic joint system and control method on the wearer.

    DOI: 10.1177/1045389X17705216

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  • 軸方向繊維強化型空気圧ゴム人工筋肉の長寿命化のための材料とアスペクト比の検討 Reviewed

    小島 明寛, 奥井 学, 山田 泰之, 中村 太郎

    日本機械学会論文集   84 ( 857 )   pp.17-00299   2018.1

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  • Tubular Peristalsis Conveyor for High-speed Powder Conveyance - Conveyance of Toner for Printer - Reviewed

    山田秦之, 吉浜舜, 芦垣恭太, 加藤弘一, 中村太郎

    計測自動制御学会論文集   54 ( 1 )   2018.1

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    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr.54.2

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  • Development of Assistive Device with Variable Viscoelastic Joint:—Effect of Viscoelasticity on Human Movement and Proposal of Viscoelastic Controller— Reviewed

    Iikawa Shingo, Okui Manabu, Suzuki Ryuji, Yamada Yasuyuki, Nakamura Taro

    Journal of the Robotics Society of Japan   36 ( 8 )   567 - 575   2018

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    <p>Recently, assisting human motion with a wearable robot is studied widely. These assisting systems are proposed from various points of view. Our study has proposed an assisting system that the torque, angle, and the viscoelasticity of the joint are variable because the human muscle has the characteristic of variable viscoelasticity. This system consists of antagonized muscle that the stiffness is variable and magneto-rheological fluid brake that the viscosity is variable. Therefore, the system enables the wearable assistive device such as exoskeletons to be structurally soft and to provide the wearer with a high back-drivability. We have proposed the assisting method by changing the viscoelasticity of the device joint according to the viscoelasticity of wearer's muscle. But suitable viscoelasticity of the joint for the assistive motion is not well known. In this paper, an experiment is conducted to examine how the viscoelasticity of the joint affects to human motion when assisting. Also, based on the results from the experiments, we propose the control method for the joint viscoelasticity of the device that responds to the assistive motion and confirm the effects with the experiments. </p>

    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.36.567

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  • The influence of prolonging lifetime of strain-induced crystallization by fatigue life test of straight-fiber-type pneumatic artificial muscle

    小島 明寛, 奥井 学, 辻 知章, 中村 太郎

    フルードパワーシステム講演会講演論文集 = The proceedings Conference of Japan Fluid Power System Society   1 - 3   2018

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  • Triangular cross-section peristaltic conveyor for transporting powders at high speed in printers Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Kyota Ashigaki, Shun Yoshihama, Kai Negishi, Koichi Kato, Taro Nakamura

    ADVANCED ROBOTICS   32 ( 12 )   646 - 658   2018

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    Powder-based materials are widely used in various applications such as printing. In printing, low shear force and high-speed conveyance at low temperatures are required to prevent creating defects in materials. In a previous study, we developed a transportation device based on the human intestinal tract that successfully transported highly viscous and solid-liquid fluid mixes and powder material. In this study, we developed a tubular peristaltic conveyor capable of transporting powdered materials in a printer under the aforementioned conditions. The conveyor had a triangular cross-sectional area and a small air chamber to facilitate high-speed peristaltic motion. The performance of the conveyor was confirmed experimentally, and we achieved a conveyance rate of 81.5g/s.

    DOI: 10.1080/01691864.2018.1491089

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  • GerWalk: Lightweight Mobile Robot with Buoyant Balloon Body and Bamboo Rimless Wheel. Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics, ROBIO 2018, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, December 12-15, 2018   2018 ( ROBIO )   1814 - 1821   2018

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    DOI: 10.1109/ROBIO.2018.8664749

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  • Considering Mixing Process of Rocket Solid Propellant Using Mixing Transport Device Simulating Peristaltic Movement of Intestinal Tract. Reviewed

    Kyota Ashigaki, Akihiro Iwasaki, D. Hagiwara, Kai Negishi, Kotaro Matsumoto, Yasuyuki Yamada, Hiroto Habu, Taro Nakamura

    7th IEEE International Conference on Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics, BioRob 2018, Enschede, The Netherlands, August 26-29, 2018   2018-August   1291 - 1296   2018

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    © 2018 IEEE. In recent years, because the development of space technology has been increasing for the purpose of improving the social infrastructure, the expansion of space transportation systems based on low-cost and high-frequency rockets is important. Solid propellants used in solid-fuel rockets have properties of the compactness, inexpensiveness, and easy-handling. However, solid propellants are highly viscous slurries and highly explosive. As there is no device capable of continuously and safely transporting solid propellant, the process of manufacturing solid propellant is a batch process. We focused on the movement of human intestines that knead and transport with a small force as part of the development process. In this report, we design a mechanism for the mixing process by using a peristaltic mixing transporting device for efficiency and by automating the equipment. Specifically, we conduct two experiments with samples using an adjusted fluid ratio: A comparison experiment on fluidity and a pressure response experiment. We investigate the possibility of automatic control and efficiency by using the factors of pressure and flow rate.

    DOI: 10.1109/BIOROB.2018.8487789

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  • Study of an Automatic Material Input Method for the Continuous Production of Solid Propellant by a Peristaltic Mixer Reviewed

    ASHIGAKI Kyota, YOSHIHAMA Shun, IWASAKI Akihiro, TAGAMI Kengo, YAMADA Yasuyuki, HABU Hiroto, NAKAMURA Taro

    TRANSACTIONS OF THE JAPAN SOCIETY FOR AERONAUTICAL AND SPACE SCIENCES, AEROSPACE TECHNOLOGY JAPAN   16 ( 7 )   662 - 667   2018

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    <p>In recent years, because development of space technology has been increasing for the purpose of improving social infrastructure, the expansion of space transportation system based on low-cost and high-frequency rockets is important. Due to the compactness, inexpensiveness, and easy-handling properties of solid propellants used in solid-fuel rockets, numerous studies on solid propellants have been conducted. However, solid propellants are highly viscous slurries and highly explosive. As there is no device capable of continuously and safely transporting the solid propellant, the process of manufacturing the solid propellant is a batch process. We focused on the movement of human intestines that knead and transport with a small force, as part of the development process. In this paper, we developed a peristaltic pump, Mk. III, for kneading a solid propellant. The pump was comprised of a heating system, an input device for the powder and fluid, and a rapid exhaust valve. An investigation into the amount of input of the raw materials was undertaken, and the tendency of kneading at the point of introduction of the powder and highly viscous fluid was determined.</p>

    DOI: 10.2322/tastj.16.662

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  • Deformation characteristic of the axially fiber reinforced cylindrical rubber subjected to inner pressure

    TSUJI Tomoaki, KOJIMA Akihiro, OKUI Manabu, HISAMICHI Itsuki, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of the JSME (in Japanese)   84 ( 868 )   18 - 00351-18-00351   2018

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    <p>The cylindrical rubber is axially reinforced by the fiber and closed by the rigid ends. When the inner pressure is applied to this fiber reinforced rubber cylinder, the diameter expands and the length shrinks. Such the cylinder can be used as the soft actuator, that is, the artificial muscle. In this paper, this problem is analyzed theoretically. Firstly, the differential equation, which is satisfied the cylinder's profile, is derived. Secondary, the solution is obtained as the closed form, when the rubber is soft enough compared to the fiber. Finally, it is found that the profile of the rubber cylinder is given by the incomplete elliptic integral, when the inner pressure is large enough. Moreover, the spring constant, the contraction ratio and the maximum stress are obtained with respect to the length of the cylinder. The spring constant is linearly increasing with the inclement of the initial length of the cylinder. The contraction ratio is increasing with the inclement of the initial length of the cylinder and converged to 54.3%. The maximum stress is related to the elastic modulus of the rubber and is not related to the inner pressure. When the length of the cylinder is through three to five times larger than the initial diameter of the cylinder, the rubber has the small maximum stress and the large contraction ratio.</p>

    DOI: 10.1299/transjsme.18-00351

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  • Research on Horizontal, Inclined, and Vertical Conveyance of Powder by Peristaltic Conveyor for Developing High-Speed Printing Machine

    Kyota Ashigaki, Shun Yoshihama, Koichi Kato, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2017 IEEE/SICE International Symposium on System Integration   2017.12

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  • Proposal of a Fixation Method for Wearable Assistive Systems Using Jamming Transition and the Expansion of an Elastic Bag

    M. Okui, K.Sekido, S.Iikawa, Y.Yamada, T. Nakamura

    Proc. of the 17th International Conference on Control, Automation and Systems (ICCAS 2017), Jeju, Korea, pp. 1466-1468   1466 - 1468   2017.10

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    A body fixing method for wearable assistive devices was proposed that utilized jamming transition and the expansion of an elastic bag. The proposed fixing part comprised a jamming layer, a rubber bag, and other components. The jamming layer deformed due to the application of pressure to an elastic bag. Then, it hardened due to negative pressure. In this research, we described the configuration and movement of the proposed method and conducted a sensory evaluation using a prototype.

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  • Proposal of Non-rotating Joint Drive Type High Output Power Assist Suit for Squat Lifting

    S. Mohri, H. Inose, H. Arakawa, K. Yokoyama, Y. Yamada, I. Kikutani, T. Nakamura

    Proc. 2017 26th IEEE International Symposium on Robot and Human Interactive Communication (RO-MAN), Lisbon, Portugal, pp. 1222-1227   2017 ( RO-MAN )   2017.9

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  • Development of Omnidirectional Wall-climbing Robot for Aircraft Inspection

    T. Amakawa, T. Yamaguchi, T. Tadami, Y. Yamada, Member, IEEE, T. Nakamura, Member, IEEE, Chuo University

    Proc. of The 20th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR 2017), Porto, Portugal, pp.269-276   2017.9

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  • Verification of Effective Assistance by Endoskeleton-type Power Assist Suit based on Musculoskeletal Simulation Reviewed

    Inose Hiroki, Mohri Shun, Yamada Yasuyuki, Yokoyama Kazuya, Kikutani Isao, Nakamura Taro

    Journal of the Robotics Society of Japan   35 ( 7 )   557 - 565   2017.9

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    Recently, low back pain of laborer is social issue in Japan. This problem is caused by excessive load on waist joint or uncomfortable posture of heavy labor, such as lifting up heavy objects. To resolve the problem, we have developed endoskeleton-type power assist suit. In previous study, the design and operation method of the assist suit was designed using simple static model. However, this method is insufficient for designing the assist suit because structure of human body is more complex than the model practically. Therefore, we use the musculoskeletal model to design the assist suit and its operation method in this paper. Firstly, motion of worker is analyzed using 3D motion capturing and this results are applied to musculoskeletal model &ldquo;Anybody&rdquo;. Secondly, with these simulation results, the assist suit and its operation method are designed. Finally, effectiveness of the assist suits confirmed by measurement of electromyography and assistive force.

    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.35.557

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  • Variable viscoelastic joint system and its application to exoskeleton

    M. Okui, S.Iikawa, Y.Yamada, T. Nakamura

    Proc. of The 2017 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems(IROS), Vancouver, Canada, pp.3897-3902   2017 ( IROS )   2017.9

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  • A pneumatic power source using a sodium bicarbonate and citric acid reaction of for use in mobile devices

    M. Okui, S.Iikawa, Y.Yamada, T. Nakamura

    Proc. of The 2017 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems(IROS), Vancouver, Canada, pp.1040-1045   2017.9

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    DOI: 10.1109/iros.2017.8202272

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  • Curved Excavation by a Sub-safloor Excavation Robot

    N. Tadami, M. Nagai, T. Nakatake, A. Fujiwara, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura, H. Yoshida, JAMSTEC, H. Sawada, T. Kubota, JAXA

    Proc. of The 2017 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems(IROS), Vancouver, Canada, pp.4950-4955   2017.9

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  • Development of an air duct cleaning robot for housing based on peristaltic crawling motion Reviewed

    Y. Tanise, K. Taniguchi, S. Yamazaki, M. Kamata, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   1267 - 1272   2017.8

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    In recent years, ventilation equipment has been installed in various structures to draw in outdoor air and circulate indoor air. These ventilation installations have pipes (ducts) through which air flows. If dust accumulates in a duct, it will be carried indoors by the airflow. Dust adversely affects human health, and so these ducts must be cleaned regularly. However, the existing cleaning methods are inadequate for the Ducts having small diameter and many curved points, that are used in houses. Thus, to clean such ducts, we have developed a robot that moves imitating peristaltic crawling. This motion is suitable for moving in ducts because it is stable in curved and narrow pipes. In addition, the robot can move and clean the duct at the same time because it moves forward by holding the pipe walls. In this paper, we outline the development of such a robot. From the results of using the robot to clean the inside of duct, we find a cleaning performance of it.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2017.8014192

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  • Development of an adhesion unit for a traveling-wave-type, omnidirectional wall-climbing robot in airplane body inspection Reviewed

    T. Amakawa, T. Yamaguchi, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   291 - 296   2017.8

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    In this study, we developed a wall-climbing robot for airplane body inspection. To move on airplane body, the robot needs to move on walls and curved surfaces. A traveling-wave-type, omnidirectional wall-climbing robot that uses magnetic force to adhere could move on such a wall and curved surface. However, magnetic force cannot be used to adhere to airplane body. Therefore, we developed a wall-climbing robot that uses negative pressure suction to adhere and move on airplane body. We performed basic experiments on the robot and designed the robot based on the experimental results.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2017.8014032

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  • Development of non-rotating joint drive type gastrocnemius-reinforcing power assist suit for squat lifting Reviewed

    Shun Mohri, Hiroki Inose, Hirokazu Arakawa, Kazuya Yokoyama, Yasuyuki Yamada, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   851 - 856   2017.8

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    Lower back pain is a major health concern worldwide. One cause of lower back pain is the burden on the lumbar region caused by the handling of heavy objects. To reduce this burden, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare in Japan has recommended 'squat lifting.' However, this technique, which supports a large force on lower limbs, is not very popular. Therefore, we aimed to develop a power assist suit for squat lifting. In this paper, we propose a gastrocnemius-reinforcing mechanism. Next, we discuss estimation of joint torque from motion analysis of squat lifting in order to construct a prototype. Finally, we describe the performance of the prototype mounted on a human body. The %MVC of the gastrocnemius while performing squat lifting was reduced by 34% using the prototype assist suit compared with the value without using the suit.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2017.8014124

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  • Development of pneumatically driven peristaltic-type robot for long distance inspection in half-inch pipes Reviewed

    M. Kamata, S. Yamazaki, Y. Tanise, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   309 - 314   2017.8

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    If pipes with narrow diameters are not well inspected, preventing accidents become difficult. Therefore, we developed a pneumatically powered earthworm-type robot for Half-inch pipes (each having an inner diameter of approximately 16 mm)
    these pipes are extremely difficult to inspect. When the robot travels for a long distance, its speed significantly decreases. When the movement distance of one cycle is small and the inter-operation period is short, the influence of the response delay of the pneumatic actuator increases and the speed decreases. Therefore, we developed a robot whose response delay is less likely to influence the driving speed and that has a large amount of movement per cycle. To create the proposed robot, we developed an extension unit and a grip unit as pneumatic actuators and experimented on pneumatic response characteristics. Also, the driving speed was measured using running tests. This confirmed that the robot's speed increased, and the speed decay owing to the long air tube decreased. The proposed robot will help reduce accidents arising from the corrosion of pipelines.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2017.8014035

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  • Investigation of odometry method of pipe line shape by peristaltic crawling robot combined with inner sensor Reviewed

    Ryutaro Ishikawa, Takeru Tomita, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   1279 - 1284   2017.8

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    In recent years, road collapse accidents due to leakage of aging sewage pipes have become a major social problem. To prevent accidents, the inside of the sewage pipe must be inspected. However, it is difficult to inspect long-distance pipes with diameters of 100 mm or less and curved pipes. Therefore, in this research, we develop an inspection system that uses earthworm movement which can drive steadily over long distances even in narrow spaces. This research involves traveling experiments on straight horizontal pipes, straight vertical pipes, and 90° pipes, and the usefulness of the proposed approach is confirmed. In this report, we present the device to estimate the shape of sewer pipelines and confirm its usefulness by experiment.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2017.8014194

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  • Development of 4-degrees of freedom force feedback device with pneumatic artificial muscles and magnetorheological clutches Reviewed

    H. Mori, M. Kobayashi, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   76 - 81   2017.8

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    In this study, we developed a 4-degrees of freedom (DOF) force feedback device independent of its operational component comprising pneumatic artificial muscles and magnetorheological clutches. Research and development of force feedback devices is becoming popular in fields such as entertainment, remote operation, and rehabilitation. These areas of research are related to virtual reality and augmented reality. People are focusing their research efforts on force feedback devices that display three-dimensional virtual objects or can provide realistic force sensing as that of stroking the surface of a virtual object. Many of these devices comprise motors
    hence, they are likely to be hazardous in the event of delayed response to an unexpected external force. In addition, their back drivability decreases when the motor output is increased via reduction gears. To solve these problems, we previously developed a 3-DOF force feedback device using pneumatic artificial muscles, which are structurally flexible and have a wide range of stiffness, and magnetorheological clutches. As the next step toward developing a 6-DOF device, we have developed a 4-DOF feedback device.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2017.8013998

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  • Shape consideration for prolonging the lifetime of the Straight-fiber-type pneumatic artificial muscle

    Akihiro KOJIMA, Manabu OKUI, Yasuyuki YAMADA, Taro NAKAMURA

    Proc. of The 11th International Convention on Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology(i-CREATe2017), KOBE, JAPAN, PT5-3   2017.8

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  • Blade-type crawler vehicle with gyro wheel for stably traversing uneven terrain at high speed Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Hirotaka Sawada, Takashi Kubota, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation   4776 - 4781   2017.7

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    Unmanned rescue, observation, and/or research vehicles with high terrain adaptability, high speed, and high reliability are needed in difficult-to-reach locations. However, for most vehicles, high performance over rough terrain reduces the travel speed and/or requires complex mechanisms. We have developed a blade-type crawler robot with a very simple and reliable mechanism, which traverses uneven terrain at high speed. Moreover, the gyro wheel design stabilizes the success of this approach in improving the motion, ensuring robust traversal. The improvement in traveling speed and robustness over uneven terrain by our approach was confirmed by experiment.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICRA.2017.7989555

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  • Semi-endoskeleton-type waist assist AB-wear suit equipped with compressive force reduction mechanism Reviewed

    Hiroki Inose, Shun Mohri, Hirokazu Arakawa, Manabu Okui, Katsuya Koide, Yasuyuki Yamada, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation   6014 - 6019   2017.7

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    In recent years in Japan, over half of all workers suffered from lower back pain. This has become a social problem that needs to be addressed. To reduce its occurrence, we developed a flexible, high-output waist assist suit called 'AB-Wear' in a previous study. The AB-Wear suit can assist human motion and reduce muscular fatigue of the waist. However, the assistive forces of the device generate compressive forces on the backbone, which have adverse effects on the body. Hence, in this study, we propose an exoskeleton-type AB-Wear equipped with a compressive force reduction mechanism, called 'semi-endoskeleton-type AB-Wear'. This device has a reduction mechanism similar to a flexible flat spring behind the upper body. Because of this structure, this device can generate an effective assistive force. First, we explain the difference between the semi-endoskeleton-type AB-Wear and the previous device. Then, we model the semi-endoskeleton-type AB-Wear because the model is used for its operation. Moreover, its effectiveness is confirmed using musculoskeletal simulation. Finally it is evaluated by measuring surface electromyography (EMG) on a subject's body to confirm its effectiveness with a real body. The EMGs of the wearer with and without the suit are compared. The usefulness of the AB-Wear is confirmed by simulation and experiment.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICRA.2017.7989711

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  • Development of a Curving Excavation Method for a Lunar-subsurface Explorer Using a Peristaltic Crawling Mechanism Reviewed

    Toyoharu Nakatake, Ami Fujiwara, Masashi Konno, Mamoru Nagai, Naoaki Tadami, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura, Hirotaka Sawada, Takashi Kubota

    IEEE International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM 2017, Munich, Germany, July 3-7, 2017   1261 - 1266   2017.7

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  • 蠕動運動型混合搬送機による固体推進薬連続製造の検討 Reviewed

    山田 泰之, 吉浜 舜, 岩崎 祥大, 芦垣 恭太, 松本 幸太郎, 羽生 宏人, 中村 太郎

    日本機械学会論文集   83 ( 850 )   pp.16-00576   2017.6

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  • Proposal of Exoskeleton with Variable Viscoelastic Joint System named Airsist I

    M. Okui, S.Iikawa, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    The 2017 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA)   2017.5

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  • Proposal of Portable Pneumatic Power Source Using Chemical Reaction of Sodium Bicarbonate and Citric Acid with Small Sized Pressure Booster Reviewed

    奥井学, 名倉裕貴, 飯川伸吾, 山田泰之, 中村太郎

    日本フルードパワーシステム学会論文集   48 ( 3 )   2017.5

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    DOI: 10.5739/jfps.48.17

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  • Throwing motion with instantaneous force using a variable viscoelastic joint manipulator Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Tatsuo Majima, Hikaru Ishihara, Taro Nakamura

    JOURNAL OF INTELLIGENT MATERIAL SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES   28 ( 8 )   999 - 1009   2017.5

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    This article focuses on developing a pneumatic artificial muscle as a variable elastic device and a magnetorheological fluid brake as a variable viscosity device and a variable friction device. We executed a throwing motion using a 2-degree-of-freedom manipulator as a case study of the control of dynamic motion. To investigate the throwing motion, we proposed the spring model of the manipulator, which includes a variable viscoelastic joint. Next, the manipulator and the spring model were extended to 2 degrees of freedom. In addition, the spring model was verified by comparing the simulation and experimental results. The simulation results reproduced the experimental results. Furthermore, we maximized the velocity of the end effector during the throwing motion by searching for adequate drive timing of the second joint in the simulation. In the simulation, hand speed was improved by releasing the second joint on the basis of the angular acceleration of the first joint. Finally, the simulation results were reproduced experimentally under the same conditions.

    DOI: 10.1177/1045389X16641202

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  • Fundamental characteristic of novel actuation system with variable viscoelastic joints and MR clutches for human assistance Reviewed

    Manabu Okui, Shingo Iikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures   2017.5

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  • Experimental Verification of the Hill-climbing Performance of Blade-Type Crawler for High-speed Rough-terrain Reviewed

    35 ( 2 )   153 - 159   2017.4

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    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.35.153

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  • Soil-Circulating System for a Peristaltic-Type Lunar Excavation Robot Reviewed

    35 ( 3 )   230 - 238   2017.4

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    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.35.230

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  • Development and Verification of Effective Motion Assistance of Endoskeleton-Type Power Assist Suit Using Pneumatic Actuators considering Shape of Waist Reviewed

    Inose Hiroki, Mohri Shun, Yamada Yasuyuki, Yokoyama Kazuya, Kikutani Isao, Nakamura Taro

    Journal of the Robotics Society of Japan   35 ( 1 )   70 - 77   2017.1

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    Recently, about 60% of worker suffers from low back pain in Japan. Hard working such as lifting and carrying provides a load to waist joint, and worker gets low back pain. So, we developed a power assist suit to reduce the load of waist joint. This assist suit has various futures; endoskeleton, high output and flexibility, because this device moves using two pneumatic actuators. This device generates active and passive assistive force. These forces can assist human motions according as situations. First of all, we analyzed the human motion by motion capturing software. The analysis results are substituted into human link model, and load of human body is estimated. Thus, we decided design and operation method of the assist suit using analysis results and a static assist suit model. The motion of wearer is &ldquo;lifting up motion&rdquo; and &ldquo;carrying motion&rdquo; in evaluation experiments, because these motions are frequently performed in manufacturing plant work. Each assistive force assists these motions, and effectiveness of assist suit was confirmed from decrease of electromyography (EMG) in wearing.

    DOI: 10.7210/jrsj.35.70

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF A FLEXIBLE EXCAVATION UNIT FOR A PERISTALTIC CRAWLING SEABED EXCAVATION ROBOT

    Mamoru Nagai, Chiharu Hirabayashi, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura, Hiroshi Yoshida

    ADVANCES IN COOPERATIVE ROBOTICS   97 - 105   2017

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    Sub-seafloor exploration is important for biological and geological research. One of the major exploration tasks is the sampling of mud containing mineral resources and that of marine sediments. We designed a peristaltic-crawling sub-seafloor excavation robot comprising three units for propulsion, excavation, and extraction. The robot was designed to move freely under the seabed and was fitted with a flexible earth auger using universal joints, designed to operate in a bending state. We experimentally tested the performance of the earth auger and excavation unit under bending states with constant curvature. The ability of the auger to excavate and convey soils while in the bending state was confirmed.

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF A LONG-DISTANCE PRESSURE FEED PIPE INSPECTION ROBOT BASED ON PERISTALTIC CRAWLING OF THE EARTHWORM Reviewed

    Takeru Tomita, Ryutaro Ishikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    ADVANCES IN COOPERATIVE ROBOTICS   88 - 96   2017

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    In this study, we developed a peristaltic crawling robot with earthworm locomotion as a test device for the long-distance inspection and maintenance of pressure feed pipes with narrow diameters and complex layouts. This robot uses pneumatic artificial muscles to reproduce an earthworm's movements. Using the developed robot, we conducted a driving experiment using a mock pipeline including actual pipes with a pressure feed pipe. We also verified the driving performance of the robot in a real environment.

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  • Proposing an adhesion unit for a traveling-wave-type, omnidirectional wall-climbing robot in airplane body inspection applications Reviewed

    Takafumi Amakawa, Tomohiro Yamaguchi, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2017 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON MECHATRONICS (ICM)   178 - 183   2017

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    This study focuses on proposing an adhesion unit for an omnidirectional robot that can inspect the body of an airplane and check its properties. We reveal relations of the adhesive force generated by the centrifugal fan with the adhesive part size, number of centrifugal fan revolutions, and leakage area between the unit and airplane body. We calculated the leakage area, and the unit was designed considering these results.

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF NEGATIVE PRESSURE SUCTION MECHANISM IN OMNIDIRECTIONAL WALL-CLIMBING ROBOT FOR INSPECTION OF AIRPLANES

    Tomohiro Yamaguchi, Takafumi Amakawa, Tetsuhide Go, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    ADVANCES IN COOPERATIVE ROBOTICS   106 - 114   2017

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    As a manual inspection process is inefficient and dangerous, it is desirable for the inspection of an airplane body to be automated by employing a wall-climbing robot. We have previously developed a traveling-wave-type omnidirectional wall-climbing robot. The robot specialized in a large contact area for ground and omnidirectional movements and can potentially conduct an inspection of an airplane body if it is installed with a negative pressure suction mechanism. In this paper, we consider techniques to install negative pressure suction to this robot.

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  • Portability and antagonistic stiffness control for an shape memory alloy artificial muscle actuator protected by a rolled film tube Reviewed

    Toshiya Ishikawa, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   2016-   220 - 227   2016.9

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    Recently, improvements in robots with human affinity have become necessary. Such robots need artificial muscles that are similar to human muscles. This improvement can be achieved by designing a telescopic actuator comparable to that of a human muscle cell. We studied a shape memory alloy actuator protected by a rolled film tube. In this study, the actuator was inserted into a natural rubber tube for portability. We investigated the fundamental characteristics of the actuator and experimented with its antagonistic stiffness control.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2016.7576770

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  • Powder conveyance experiments with peristaltic conveyor using a pneumatic artificial muscle Reviewed

    S. Yoshihama, S. Takano, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura, K. Kato

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   2016-   1539 - 1544   2016.9

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    In recent years, powdered materials have been often used in various industries. Among the various uses of powders, we focused on the conveyance of the developer in the printers. Screw conveyors are commonly used in the printer for the conveyance of the developer. However, this presents the problems such as the condensation of the developer by the shearing force and the temperature rise. Thus, low shear and high-speed conveyance at a low temperature is required. In an alternative approach, we developed a transport device that mimics the intestinal tract and demonstrated successful transport of the highly viscous and solid-liquid mixed fluids. In this study, to overcome the above problems, we considered the peristaltic conveyor. We investigated the ability of this conveyor to convey powder by using the expansion of the rubber. In this work, we performed conveyance experiments by using the carrier used in the printer and measured the weight to determine the conveyance performance per unit of time. By measuring the changes in the conveyance amount due to the changes of the motion interval time, we determined the condition for obtaining the maximum conveyance amount. We then determined the conveyance amount per unit time for the developer.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2016.7576989

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  • Development of an automatic soil-releasing mechanism for a peristaltic-type lunar excavation robot

    Toyoharu Nakatake, Masashi Konno, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura, Takashi Kubota

    The 19th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and Support Technologies for Mobile Machines (CLAWAR 2016)   115 - 123   2016.9

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  • Mobilizing and Antagonistic Stiffness Control for SMA Artificial Muscle Actuator Protected by Rolled Film Tube Reviewed

    ISHIKAWA Toshiya, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers   52 ( 3 )   103 - 112   2016.3

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    The endoskeleton humanoid robot needs an artificial muscle that is comparable with a human muscle from a viewpoint of form, flexibility, output force, output displacement and the responses. For this realizing, we are studying a Shape Memory Alloy (SMA) actuator that protected by a rolled film tube have the high heat resistance and the high flexibility. In this study, this actuator is inserted into a natural rubber tube for mobilizing and experimented about its antagonistic stiffness control.

    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr.52.103

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  • Performance evaluation of composite propellant slurry mixing by peristaltic continuous mixer

    Akihiro Iwasaki, Shun Yoshihama, Kana Otake, Naomasa Hosomi, Natsuyo Uegaki, Kotaro Matsumoto, Yasuyuki Yamada, Soichiro Yamaguchi, Taro Nakamura, Hiroto Habu

    Proceedings of the International Astronautical Congress, IAC   2016.1

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    Copyright © 2016 by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF). All rights reserved. The target of this study is to realize the continuous solid propellant producing technique for a cost reduction of solid rocket motor systems. In the process of the solid propellant manufacture, the mixing process controls the quality of the loaded solid propellant; the batch process is impossible to be replaced at present. We have considered the peristaltic pumping action mixer as one of the candidates for the continuous mixer. This mixer system is based on the artificial muscle actuator (soft actuator), and it is elongated and contracted by the pressurized gas. The system has some segments that has double rubber pipes (inner/outer), and the units can work independently. The outer rubber tube controls the shape change direction; the inner one works as a mixing chamber. The outer tube is swollen by the pressurized gas and the segments constrict axially; the inner tube inflates and the free volume can be changed. We expected that this mixer system has possible to replace the batch process by the continuous one. The peristaltic motion enables not only the mixing but also conveying even high viscosity slurry. The mixing mechanism by the soft actuator compress has no impact for the safety of the solid propellant handling. In this research, the mixing completeness of the composite solid propellant slurry by the peristaltic pumping mixer was estimated. The dispersion of the particle materials in the binder and the existing voids was observed by the X ray CT microscope. The solid propellant samples were made by our mixing system. The test materials were as follows: Hydroxyl terminated polybutadiene (HTPB) polymer as for the binder, aluminum powder as for the metallic fuel, dioctyladipate as for the plasticizer, ammonium perchlorate particles as for the oxidizer. The propellant composition was HTPB/AP/Al = 14/68/18 in massThe result showed that the mixer we proposed could mix the propellant slurry. The X ray CT scanning images showed that the solid materials well dispersed through the analysis of the luminance histograms.

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  • Development of the Attachment for the Cable of Peristaltic Crawling Robot to Reduce Friction in Elbow Pipe Reviewed

    Ryutaro Ishikawa, Takeru Tomita, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    INTELLIGENT ROBOTICS AND APPLICATIONS, ICIRA 2016, PT I   9834   589 - 595   2016

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    It is difficult to research small diameter pipes using conventional devices. In order to solve this challenge, this paper focuses on the locomotion of an earthworm that is capable of moving stably in a narrow space. A peristaltic crawling robot was developed which was capable of traveling 100 m through a 100A specification pipe using a peristaltic movement. However, especially in long distance inspection, and in elbow pipe, friction force between cable and pipes are too larger to ignore. Therefore, the friction force makes the robot impossible to inspect for long distance. And the friction force injure the cable and air tube equipped in the robot. In this paper, we developed an attachment to reduce the friction force. Using this device, we conducted experiment to measure friction in elbow pipe, and confirmed its effectiveness.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-43506-0_51

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  • The Continuous Mixing Process of Composite Solid Propellant Slurry by the Artificial Muscle Actuator Reviewed

    Akihiro Iwasaki, Kotaro Matsumoto, Ryosuke Ban, Shun Yoshihama, Hiroto Habu, Taro Nakamura

    Transactions of the Japan Society for Aeronautical and Space Sciences, Aerospace Technology Japan   14 ( ists30 )   a_107 - a_110   2016

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  • Blade-type Crawler Vehicle with Wings in Ground Effect for Traversing Uneven Terrain at High Speed Reviewed

    Yasuyuki Yamada, Gen Endo, Taro Nakamura

    2016 IEEE/RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS (IROS 2016)   3575 - 3580   2016

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    Unmanned rescue, observation and/or research vehicles with high terrain adaptability, high speed, and high reliability are needed to reach difficult locations. However, most vehicles achieve improved performance over rough terrain at the expense of low speed and/or complex mechanisms. We developed a blade-type crawler robot with a very simple and reliable mechanism, capable of traversing uneven terrain at high speed, using aerodynamic devices. As these small devices are in the low Reynolds number region, we tested a wing that made use of the ground effect. We experimentally confirmed the success of this approach in improving the traveling speed and ability to traverse uneven terrain. The robot with aerodynamic lift was climbed 1.5 times higher obstacle than without wings.

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  • Development of a 1-DOF Wearable Force Feedback Device with Soft Actuators and Comparative Evaluation of the Actual Objects and Virtual Objects in the AR Space Reviewed

    Ryo Suzuki, Masakazu Egawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2016 14TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CONTROL, AUTOMATION, ROBOTICS AND VISION (ICARCV)   2016

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    A desktop force feedback device is able to render reaction force of virtual objects. However, the desktop type limits operator's motion. In contrast, a wearable force feedback device allows us to interact with virtual objects while moving in virtual space. In this study, we have developed a 1-DOF wearable force feedback device with MR brake and pneumatic artificial muscles. These actuators are lightweight, have a high power density, and are controlled by feed-forward control. This device is equipped with the operator's arm and renders various forces, such as friction, elasticity, and viscosity. In this paper, we improve the device to solve existing problems from previous studies. The proposed device is tested to confirm its basic properties. It is applied to augmented reality space and comparisons of subjective evaluations between virtual objects and actual objects

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  • Development of axial extension actuator for narrow pipe inspection endoscopic robot Reviewed

    S. Yamazaki, Y. Tanise, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura

    2016 IEEE/SICE INTERNATIONAL SYMPOSIUM ON SYSTEM INTEGRATION (SII)   634 - 639   2016

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    We have developed an earthworm-type 25A pipe inspection robot using a pneumatic drive. However, the developed robot had a low locomotion speed. This was due to the fact that the contraction amount of the pneumatic artificial muscle used for driving the actuator of the robot was small. To resolve the problem and increase the amount of movement of the robot, an extension actuator to extend in the axial direction was developed. The developed actuators was tested in an experiment that measured the extension amount. At that time, it was confirmed that the actuator largely extended while bending. Therefore, an experiment was performed to verify the bending of actuators and to confirm the extent of the bending. Test results confirmed that the movement tracing of extension actuator with tension springs on both the inside and outside (actuator2) was straighter than that of extension actuator that used the tension spring only on the inside (actuator1). In addition, the developed actuator was tested in an experiment that measured pushing force and pulling force. It was also verified that the extension actuator satisfied the force requirements for the robot.

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  • The Verification of Permissible Resistant Torque Considering Back-Drivability to Develop a Wearable Assist Suit Reviewed

    Shingo Iikawa, Manabu Okui, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2016 14TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CONTROL, AUTOMATION, ROBOTICS AND VISION (ICARCV)   2016

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    In this paper, permissible resistant torque considering back-drivability is verified to develop a wearable assist suit (WAS). The WAS has a clutch and a variable viscoelasticity joint. In this paper, permissible resistant torque is defined as torque that is acceptable in daily use. As first stage of the WAS development, the paper discusses the relationship between the resistant torque to the knee and the degree of discomfort experienced by the wearer as evaluated through a survey questionnaire experiment. In addition, the influence of the resistant torque on a muscle of the knee extension is considered and confirmed by measuring surface electromyography (surface-EMG).

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Crawling Robot for Long-distance Complex Line Sewer Pipe Inspections Reviewed

    Rvutaro Ishikawa, Takcru Tomita, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2016 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM)   413 - 418   2016

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    To reduce the risk of serious accidents, such as road subsidence caused by damaged and aging sewer pipes, internal inspections of sewer pipes is required. However, it is difficult to inspect small diameter pipes using existing inspection devices. In order to solve this challenge, this paper focuses on the locomotion of an earthworm that is capable of moving stably in a narrow space. A peristaltic crawling robot was developed which was capable of traveling 100 m through a 100A specification pipe using a peristaltic movement. The robot consists of a seven unit section, six joints, and a head unit equipped with a camera. It is actuated with the use of an artificial muscle operated by air pressure. The effectiveness of the new robot was evaluated by conducting experiments in horizontal, vertical, and bent pipes. In addition, the authors proposed and validated a new movement pattern to increase the robot speed in 90 degrees elbow pipes.

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  • Vertical jumping motion simulation with consideration for landing using a monopedal robot with artificial muscles and magnetorheological brakes Reviewed

    Takahiro Nagayama, Hikaru Ishihara, Hiroki Tomori, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    PROCEEDINGS OF THE IECON 2016 - 42ND ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   660 - 665   2016

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    Bipedal robots capable of various dynamic motions such as walking, running, and jumping have been developed in recent years. In particular, these dynamic motions require the use of high power in a short time when the robot kicks off the ground. Furthermore, it is necessary to decrease the impact force that a robot is subjected to when landing during these motions. Unfortunately, rigid actuators tend to become heavier as their output increases. Therefore, we focus on the method for obtaining a high output using elastic energy. However, the use of the elastic element only leads to robot vibration. Therefore, to control the dynamic motion, we adopted the viscosity element to the robot joint. In this study, we focused on a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle for the elastic element and a magneto rheological brake for the viscosity and friction elements, respectively. A previously designed monopedal robot was able to jump 82.5 mm using a sliding rail and counter weights; however, the robot shook upon landing because of the presence of the elastic element in its artificial muscles. In this paper, we first proposed a dynamic model of the previously developed monopedal robot. We then performed vertical jumping simulations of the robot to confirm the model's utility.

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  • 1st Prototype of a Variable Viscoelastic Joint System with a Clutch Composed of Pneumtic Air Muscle And Magneto Rheological Brake Reviewed

    Auth Manabu Okui, Shingo Iikawa, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2016 14TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CONTROL, AUTOMATION, ROBOTICS AND VISION (ICARCV)   2016

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    In this study, a variable viscoelastic joint system with a clutch for a human assistance was proposed. The variable viscoelastic joint system comprised antagonized artificial muscles and magneto-rheological fluid brake (MR-brake). This system enabled the human assisting device such as exoskeletons to retain structural softness when compared with the existing devices driven by motor and reduction gear, which could only achieve superficial softness. In addition, a clutch system that provided high back-drivability to the wearer by structurally separating the device from the wearer was proposed. As an initial step in designing the human assisting device, a prototype with the proposed variable viscoelastic joint system for knee assistance is developed. Also, its control method were developed. Furthermore, experiments were conducted to confirm the influence of the proposed viscoelastic joint system on the wearer and the effectiveness of the clutch system.

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  • Development of Endoskeleton Type Knee Auxiliary Power Assist Suit using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles Reviewed

    Shun Mohri, Hiroki Inose, Kazuya Yokoyama, Yasuyuki Yamada, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura

    2016 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM)   107 - 112   2016

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    Lower back pain continues to be an issue worldwide. One cause of lower back pain is the burden on the lumbar region caused by the handling of heavy objects. To reduce this burden on the lumbar region in the lifting, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare in Japan has recommended a lifting technique called "squat lifting." However this technique, which supports a large force on the knee, is not very popular. Therefore, to spread the use of squat lifting, we aimed to develop a power assist suit for knee auxiliary. In this study, firstly, the validity of the squat lifting in lower back pain was measured. Next, to construct a prototype based on the target value, the knee joint moments from motion analysis of squat lifting was estimated. Finally, the prototype was mounted on a human body to evaluate its performance. And we confirmed the effectiveness of the prototype.

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  • Optimization of Throwing Motion by 2-DOF Variable Viscoelastic Joint Manipulator Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Hikaru Ishihara, Takahiro Nagayama, Taro Nakamura

    INTELLIGENT ROBOTICS AND APPLICATIONS, ICIRA 2016, PT I   9834   577 - 588   2016

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    This paper focuses on control of variable viscoelasticity joint manipulator. Each joint consists of pneumatic rubber artificial muscle and magnetorheological fluid. And the joint can generate instantaneous force by accumulating potential energy in artificial muscle. Using instantaneous force appropriately, robots can perform dynamic motion such as jumping and throwing like a human. These motions are expected to contribute to the efficient transport of objects and improve the robot's mobility. And also, elasticity and viscosity of joints are needed to control appropriately to achieve target task. Therefore, we proposed a method to control variable viscoelasticity of joint. We set throwing motion as a target task. And elasticity and viscosity are decided by simulation. In addition, simulation result is optimized by Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO) algorithm. Finally, we conducted throwing experiment to reproduce the simulation result. As a result, simulation result showed that elasticity and viscosity changed to accelerate end effector. However, experimental result showed deviations from simulation result because of model error.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-43506-0_50

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  • Development of a Lightweight Power-assist Suit Using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and Balloon-amplification Mechanism Reviewed

    Hiroki Inose, Shun Mohri, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura, Kazuya Yokoyama, Isao Kikutani

    2016 14TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CONTROL, AUTOMATION, ROBOTICS AND VISION (ICARCV)   2016

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    Low back pain of workers is increased in workplaces that involve hard work. It is caused by excessive loading of the waist joint and muscle fatigue. Therefore, power-assist suits have been developed to decrease the load on the waist joint. However, previous power-assist suits have had problems such as low output or heaviness. Thus, we have developed an assist suit that is lightweight and exerts a large force. A balloon actuator and pneumatic artificial muscles are attached to assist suit as the actuators. The assist suit has various desirable features: lightweight, flexibility, and high output. First, human motion is analyzed for the development of the assist suit. The assist suit is developed to assist the waist joint torque. The assist suit is modeled, and the theoretical values of its generation force are estimated using an assist-suit model. Finally, the assist suit is evaluated by measuring the surface electromyography (EMG). The EMG of the wearer is compared with that without the suit. The effectiveness of the assist suit is confirmed by a decrease in EMG.

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  • High-Speed Response of the Pneumatic Actuator Used in a Peristaltic Crawling Robot Inspecting Long-Distance Gas Pipes Reviewed

    Yuki Tanise, Tatsuya Kishi, Shota Yamazaki, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura

    2016 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM)   1234 - 1239   2016

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    At present, city infrastructures are supported by buried gas pipes. Recently, to prevent gas leakage from old gas pipes (which can lead to accidents), routine inspections are required. However, current inspection methods require enormous cost and time. To solve this problem, researchers have developed various pipe inspection robots; however, these robots have difficulty climbing or maneuvering through narrow pipes. Therefore, we focused on the peristaltic crawling of an earthworm. This motion provides a large contact surface area in small spaces, enabling movement through narrow pipes. Therefore we developed a peristaltic crawling robot. It is installed with a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle and is driven by a fire-safe pneumatic system. However, delaying air transmission reduces the velocity of the robot. Considering the costs of hiring workers and the problems created by incidents such as roadblocks, a short inspection time is desired. Installing a solenoid to increase the robot's velocity is impractical in gas pipes because it increases the fire risk. Therefore, we propose an air discharge hole on-off mechanism and instant-supply high pressure and confirm their efficacy in the present study.

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  • Force Feedback Device with Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and Magnetorheological Clutches Reduction of sticking phenomenon for MR clutch and display of viscous torque Reviewed

    Masatoshi Kobayashi, Junya Hirano, Taro Nakamura, Yasuyuki Yamada

    PROCEEDINGS OF THE IECON 2016 - 42ND ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   698 - 703   2016

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    Recently, force feedback devices that intuitively achieve excellent operation have attracted attention in a wide range of fields such as remote operation, virtual reality, and medical training systems. However, it is difficult for conventional devices to widely display soft and hard objects because of driving motors. Moreover, they are likely to be hazardous in the event of delayed response to an unexpected external force. To solve these problems, we previously developed a force feedback device using pneumatic artificial muscles, which are structurally flexible and have wide a range of stiffness, and magneto rheological clutches. Furthermore, we confirmed that any three-dimensional virtual object can be displayed using the developed device. However, when the operation part of the force feedback device is moved away from the virtual object, it remains stuck to the virtual object. In this study, we propose a system to reduce the sticking phenomenon and experimentally confirm the reduction rate (85%). Moreover, we displayed viscous torque as a new application of the feedback device.

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  • Soil Circulating System for a Lunar Subsurface Explorer Robot Using a Peristaltic Crawling Mechanism Reviewed

    T. Nakatake, M. Konno, A. Mizushina, Y. Yamada, T. Nakamura, T. Kubota

    2016 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM)   407 - 412   2016

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    We have been developing an excavation robot for lunar subsurface investigations. The robot locomotion is based on the peristaltic crawling of an earthworm, which enables stable movement. The robot comprises three units: propulsion, excavation, and discharging units. In our previous research, we demonstrated that the propulsion and excavation units can excavate down to 650 mm without the discharging unit. However, when all three units were incorporated into the robot, excavation was limited by soil dropping from the discharging unit. To overcome this problem, we developed a novel soil circulating system. This paper presents the new system and experimentally verifies its feasibility. Finally, the contribution of the proposed system is confirmed in an excavation experiment. The robot's performance was remarkably improved by the system, and its excavation depth increased to 938 mm.

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  • Effective Motion Assistance Using a Passive Force Endoskeleton Power Assist Suit Reviewed

    Hiroki Inose, Shun Mohri, Yasuyuki Yamada, Taro Nakamura, Kazuya Yokoyama, Isao Kikutani

    PROCEEDINGS OF THE IECON 2016 - 42ND ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   542 - 547   2016

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    Lower back pain accounts for more than half of all reported on-the-job ailments, escalating from a personal challenge to a broader societal challenge. Researchers have developed a power assist suit intended prototype to reduce the incidence of lower back pain in the workplace when process automation is not possible. Equipped with two pneumatic actuators, the prototype suit is lightweight, flexible, and efficient. The prototype suit can assist human motion using passive and active forces. In this study, researchers confirmed the effectiveness of passive assistive force. Two types of motion were considered: lifting and unloading in a crouching position and carrying. Researchers first analyzed the subject motions using video analysis software. Waist joint loads were estimated using motion analysis results and a human link model. Second, researchers determined the power assist suit's operational parameters and developed a power assist suit model. Lastly, researchers confirmed the passive force prototype suit's effectiveness based on measured changes in generated force and electromyography.

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  • Verification of throwing operation by a manipulator with variable viscoelastic joints with straight-fiber-type artificial muscles and magnetorheological brakes Reviewed

    T. Nagayama, H. Ishihara, H. Tomori, T. Nakamura

    ADVANCED ROBOTICS   30 ( 21 )   1365 - 1379   2016

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    The performance of a robot can be enhanced by increasing its output. However, increasing the output of rigid actuators such as motors and hydraulic actuators will likely increase the weight of the robot. Conversely, organisms such as human beings achieve high output within a short time by accumulating and releasing the elastic energy stored in their muscles; thus, providing an instantaneous force. Moreover, the viscoelastic properties of muscle enable organisms to control their instantaneous force outputs and overall movements. Therefore, in this study, we developed a manipulator with two-degree-of-freedom (DOF) variable viscoelastic joints. The manipulator comprised straight-fiber-type artificial muscles and a magnetorheological (MR) brakes. The ability of a manipulator to generate controlled movement from an instantaneous force was tested in a throwing operation. This simple two-DOF variable viscoelastic manipulator with apparent viscosity control by the MR brakes achieved successful throwing motions. However, it was not possible to calculate the experimental parameters from the target operation in previous study. Therefore, we focused on particle swarm optimization (PSO) as a parameter search method. In this paper, we try to optimize parameters of the throwing movement by combining the spring model of a two-DOF variable viscoelastic manipulator with the PSO method.

    DOI: 10.1080/01691864.2016.1217272

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  • Development of seabed excavation robot with peristaltic crawling Reviewed

    M. Nagai, A. Mizushina, T. Nakamura, F. Sugimoto, K. Watari, H. Nakajo, H. Yoshida

    IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems   2015-   3869 - 3874   2015.12

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    Sub-seafloor explorations are important for biological and geological research. Sampling mud is one of the major sub-seafloor exploration procedures. The mud-including mineral resources and marine sediments are potentially valuable resources for future studies. Therefore, we propose a peristaltic-crawling-based sub-seafloor excavation robot for deep sea exploration. This robot consists of three units (propulsion, excavation and extraction units), enabling it to move freely through mud. The excavation and propulsion units are fitted with an earth auger and artificial muscles, respectively. In this paper, we verify the propulsion actuator as the first stage of robot development. First, we evaluate the performance of an oil hydraulic artificial muscle under water pressure. Next, we develop an excavation robot by incorporating a pneumatic artificial muscle into a robot and then experimentally evaluate propulsion and excavation of the robot. We confirmed that the artificial muscle appropriately performs as an actuator for the excavation robot.

    DOI: 10.1109/IROS.2015.7353921

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  • Development of a peristaltic crawling robot for inspection of force main sewer pipes

    Takeru Tomita, Tomoya Tanaka, Taro Nakamura

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015),1A2-12   2015   82 - 83   2015.12

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    In recent years, accidents wherein roads have collapsed because of aging sewer pipes have been widely reported. To prevent such accidents it is necessary to inspect sewer pipes. We have developed a sewer pipe inspection robot inspired by peristalsis, the method that earthworms use to move. This robot comprises seven units, six joints, and a head part with a camera for inspection. In this study, we conducted field tests using actual sewer pipes, and confirmed the functioning, usefulness and potential of the robot.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.82

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  • Verification of effective motion assistance by a power-assist suit during crouching positions

    Hiroki Inose, Shun Mouri, Taro Nakamura(Chuo Univ, Hiroya Imamura, Isao Kikutani(Nabtesco

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015)   2015   60 - 61   2015.12

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    Lower back pain has become a serious problem in many workplaces. It is caused by lifting of heavy objects and adopting bad postures such as crouching. We have developed a power-assist suit that effectively eases the lifting-up motion. In this study, we evaluate the effectiveness of the assist suit in crouching positions. To this end, we selected two motion patterns of the assist suit and verified their effectiveness using a force sensor, motion analysis, and electromyography.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.60

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  • Mixing of Solid Propellant by Peristaltic Pump Based on Bowel Peristalsis

    S. Yoshihama, R. Ban, T. Nakamura, A. Iwasaki, H. Habu

    2015 IEEE/RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS (IROS)   2015-December   3862 - 3868   2015.12

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    In recent years, the demand for rocket launching has increased due to the development of space technology. However, using inexpensive rockets is not always possible. Although the cost of solid-propellant rockets is relatively reasonable, safely manufacturing a large amount of solid propellant is difficult, and the manufacturing process is disjointed. Therefore, safe and continues manufacturing of solid propellant is necessary. On the basis of the movements of the intestinal tract, we realized that the movements required for transport and mixing of solid propellants are possible to achieve without the application of a large force. By mimicking these intestinal movements, we can safely and continuously manufacture a large amount of solid propellant. We developed a peristaltic pump, based on bowel peristalsis, using straight-fiber-type artificial muscle, and in this study, we demonstrate the usefulness of this pump for transporting the highly viscous fluids and solid-liquid mixed fluid. We consider that the peristaltic pump can also be effectively used as a mixing device. In this paper, we show that mixing one highly viscous fluid with another is possible by measuring the luminance values. In the manufacturing process, we use glass beads with the same diameter as microparticles and a sodium polyacrylate aqueous solution resembling a high viscosity fluid or hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene as the raw material in the solid propellant. We then measure the glass beads in the resulting solid-liquid mixed fluid.

    DOI: 10.1109/IROS.2015.7353920

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  • Improvement in SMA Artificial Muscle Actuator Protected by Rolled Film Tube

    Toshiya Ishikawa, Taro Nakamura

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015),1P1-01   2015   121 - 122   2015.12

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    Recently, improvement in robots with human affinity is necessary. This improvement can be achieved by designing a telescopic actuator comparable to that of a human muscle cell. We study a shape memory alloy (SMA) actuator protected by a rolled film tube. In the present study, the actuator is inserted into a natural rubber tube and investigated the characteristics.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.121

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  • Versatile ladder-climbing carrying device using slider crank mechanism

    Yasuyuki Yamada(Chuo Univ, Ryota Yokoto(Keio Uni, Taro Nakamura(Chuo

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015),1A2-07   2015   72 - 73   2015.12

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    Ladders are used in various places and for a variety of applications because ladders do not need to be installed in large spaces or specific structures. However, humans carrying heavy loads when using a ladder are subject to fatigue and the risk of falling. In this study, we proposed a robot that is capable of climbing various types of ladders using a simple link mechanism.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.72

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  • Magnetic Field Analysis of the Permanent Magnetic Adhesion Mechanism of a Traveling-Wave-Type Omni-directional Wall Climbing Robot

    Tomohiro Yamaguchi, Tetsuhide Go, Taro Nakamura

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015),2A1-03   2015   241 - 242   2015.12

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    This study describes the development of an omni-directional wall climbing robot with permanent magnets for the purpose of inspecting the walls of ships and gas tanks. The robot travels omnidirectionally and achieves stable movement through its large contact area. We equipped our traveling-wave-type omni-directional robot with a permanent magnetic adhesion mechanism and confirmed its wall-climbing ability. In this study, we analyze the magnetic field of the permanent magnetic adhesion mechanism by using finite element method. An improvement of the permanent magnetic adhesion mechanism based on the results of the analysis is foreseen.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.241

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  • An automatic Soil-Releasing Mechanism for a Lunar Subsurface Excavation Robot

    Masahiko Konno, Ippei Sawada, Toyoharu Nakatake, Taro Nakamura(Chuo Univ, Takashi Kubota(JAX

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015)   2015   183 - 184   2015.12

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    We have been developing a lunar subsurface excavation robot using peristaltic crawling based on an earthworm's locomotion. The robot is designed to discharge the excavated soil from the borehole to the ground surface. However, the soil-discharging process is not yet automated. This paper develops and tests two promising soil-discharging mechanisms for automatic soil discharge.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.183

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  • Junmping and Landing Simulation for a 2-DOF One-Legged Robot with Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and a MR Brake

    Hikaru Ishihara, Takahiro Nagayama, Hiroki Tomori, Taro Nakamura, Chuo

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015),2A2-02   2015   300 - 301   2015.12

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    We developed a one-legged robot with straight fiber-type artificial muscles and a magnetorheological brake for jumping. In this study, we produced a one-legged robot with 2-DOF, structured the jumping model considering landing and calculated the jumping height by simulation. The result of the simulation shows that the robot was able to jump safely.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.300

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  • A 1-DOFWearable Force Feedback Device with Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and MR Brake

    Masakazu Egawa, Takumi Watanabe, Taro Nakamura

    the 6th International Conference on Advanced Mechatronics(ICAM2015),2A1-04   2015   243 - 244   2015.12

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    A wearable force feedback device enables us to dynamically interact with a virtual object while moving in a wide virtual space. We have developed a wearable force feedback device with a pneumatic artificial muscle and a magnetorheological (MR) brake. These mechanical elements show quick response by feed-forward control and have high power density. In this paper, we tackled on weight saving of the device, and measured basic property again. Afterward, we evaluated whether operators could perceive the difference when rendered different magnitudes of frictional force or elastic force. The operators were rendered one of the five levels of force, and replied which level this force was.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.243

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  • Development of a peristaltic crawling robot for long-distance sewer pipe inspection with consideration of complex pipe line

    Takeru Tomita, Tomoya Tanaka, Taro Nakamura

    the IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems   2742 - 2747   2015.10

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  • Development of a wearable haptic device with pneumatic artificial muscles and MR brake Reviewed

    Masakazu Egawa, Takumi Watanabe, Taro Nakamura

    2015 IEEE Virtual Reality Conference, VR 2015 - Proceedings   173 - 174   2015.8

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    Desktop haptic device has been developed in the field of rehabilitation and entertainment. However, the desktop type restrains human's movement. Therefore, it is difficult to receive force sense information, moving to wide range position and posture. In this study, we developed a 1-DOF wearable haptic device with pneumatic artificial muscles and a MR brake. These smart actuators have high power density and change its output force structurally. Therefore, this haptic device can render various force sense such as elasticity, friction and viscosity. In this abstract, we describe two experiments rendering elasticity and friction to evaluate the performance of the device.

    DOI: 10.1109/VR.2015.7223351

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  • Development of Homo-Robot Using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles

    Shota Yamazki, Tatsuya Kishi, Taro Nakamura

    the 8th International Conference on Intelligent Robotics and Applications   9244   390 - 401   2015.8

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Crawling Inspection Robot for Half-Inch Pipes Using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles Reviewed

    KISHI Tatsuya, IKEUCHI Megumi, NAKAMURA Taro

    SICE JCMSI   8 ( 4 )   256 - 264   2015.7

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    This paper describes the development of an in-pipe inspection robot for use in half-inch pipes. Half-inch pipes are commonly used in factories and residences, and in-pipe inspection is essential for preventing accidents caused by burst pipes or corrosion. In-pipe inspection is currently endoscopically conducted; however, endoscopes cannot be inserted into pipes that are more than 15m long or that have complex shapes, such as elbows. Therefore, various in-pipe inspection robots have been developed, though very few can travel inside half-inch pipes, and none can pass through a 90° elbow. Moreover, no study reports in-pipe robots making long-distance runs within half-inch pipes. The authors have developed a peristaltic crawling inspection robot with pneumatic artificial muscles for use in half-inch pipes; they seek to enable the robot to pass through a 90° elbow and have studied the robot's ability to travel long distances of more than 15m.

    DOI: 10.9746/jcmsi.8.256

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  • Development of insertion-type peristalsis pump using pneumatic artificial muscles Reviewed

    Ryosuke Ban, Yoshiki Kimura, Taro Nakamura

    ADVANCED ROBOTICS   29 ( 13 )   877 - 888   2015.7

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    This study aims to develop a new type of peristaltic pump that transports high-viscosity and solid-liquid mixture fluids. Pumps capable of transporting such fluids are essential in various situations such as factory transportation, outdoors, and emergencies. These fluids are conventionally transported by positive-displacement and rotodynamic pumps. However, solid-liquid fluids could collide with the impeller of the rotodynamic pump and thereby damage the pump, whereas the positive-displacement pump must be sufficiently large to apply high pressure to the transported fluid. A small pump that can transport these fluids would save factory space and enable outdoor applications such as dredging operations. Thus, we adopted earthworm peristalsis as a model mechanism of fluid transport within a standard plumbing infrastructure. The insertion-type peristaltic pump developed in this study uses an artificial rubber muscle to achieve an earthworm-like mechanism. The capability and energy efficiency of the mechanism is evaluated in water transportation experiments.

    DOI: 10.1080/01691864.2015.1052847

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  • Study on Geotechnical Tests with a Lunar Subsurface Explorer Robot Using a Peristaltic Crawling Mechanism Reviewed

    MIZUSHINA Asuka, OMORI Hayato, KITAMOTO Hiroyuki, NAKAMURA Taro, OSUMI Hisashi, KUBOTA Takashi

    SICE JCMSI   8 ( 4 )   242 - 249   2015.7

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    Recently, planetary investigations have accumulated basic data through various aerospace explorations. However, the investigations of underground such as moonquakes, heat, and conditions of the soil have not revealed much. Therefore, the authors have developed a novel, small planetary subsurface excavation robot that uses the peristaltic crawling of an earthworm as its underground propulsion method. In this study, the authors focused on two types of geotechnical tests: pressure meter and shearing tests using the excavation robot. These tests were conducted by measuring displacement and force in the radial and vertical directions inside the soil, using the excavation robot's own hardware system. This paper describes these geotechnical tests, which used the propulsion unit of the robot and measured the soil parameters, e.g., internal friction angle, adhesibility, and elastic constant. From the experiments, the authors evaluated and discussed results by comparing with reference data. The authors confirmed that the propulsion unit could measure the soil parameters and propel itself underground at the same time.

    DOI: 10.9746/jcmsi.8.242

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  • Variable Impedance Control with Variable Viscoelasticity Joint Manipulator for Instantaneous Force Reviewed

    TOMORI Hiroki, NAGAI Suguru, MAJIMA Tatsuo, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers   51 ( 6 )   380 - 389   2015.5

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    Humans perform various motion such as jumping or throwing without high vibration, via variable viscoelasticity characteristics. On the other hand, highly rigid actuators such as geared motors or hydraulic actuators are widely used in industrial robots. It is difficult that they have variable viscoelasticity for them. In addition, to obtain high-speed motion, it is necessary to increase the actuator output as the robot weight increases. We have developed a one-degree-of-freedom manipulator with a variable rheological joint using a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle and a magnetorheological (MR) brake. With the generation of instantaneous force, the dead and rise times decreased compared to the conventional method. After the generation of an arbitrary instantaneous force, we controlled the robot's arm position by applying an equilibrium force on the joint. Furthermore, we controlled the vibrations of the arm by controlling the MR brake using an evaluation function. By this impedance control, response of the arm was improved without large loss of power.

    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr.51.380

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  • Development of an Endoscopic Support Device Using Veering-out Tube with Stiffening Capability by Granular Jamming:—Application to a Large Intestine of Dead Swine— Reviewed

    YANAGIDA Takaichi, KAMAGATA Teppei, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers   51 ( 5 )   290 - 296   2015.5

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    This paper describes a development of an colonoscopic device that veering-out a latex tube with jamming by granular materials and an application to a large intestine of dead swine. Recently, colorectal cancer is increasing. However, the cancer can be cured completely if it is discovered and treated early with a large intestine endoscope. A conventional endoscope can screen and heal the inside of the intestine, but such surgery is difficult for doctors. In this study, in order an attempt to solve these problems, we propose an endoscopic device that veering-out a latex tube with jamming by granular materials. This device can pass through the sigmoid colon of dead swine that is set like a human without difficult operation. Unlike other endoscopic robots, our device can support the endoscope. Thus we can easily perform various functions of the conventional endoscope. Here we explain our device using rice as jamming material. Next, we describe our experiment confirming the efficacy in large intestine model. We also confirm the availability of the endoscopic support device for use in the large intestine of a dead swine.

    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr.51.290

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  • Development of Traveling Wave Type Omni-directional Wall Climbing Robot Using an Adhesion Device with Permanent Magnet Reviewed

    GO Tetsuhide, OSAWA Tatsuya, OGAWA Teruyoshi, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers   51 ( 5 )   282 - 289   2015.5

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    We have developed the traveling wave type omni-directional mobile robot that imitates the snail locomotion mechanism. An advantage of this movement mechanism is that it enables stable motion because of a large contact area. We think that this stable motion is applicable to wall climbing. In this paper, we developed magnetic adhesion mechanism that can be switched adhesion and installed it in the robot. Furthermore, we confirmed the performance of this robot through experiments.

    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr.51.282

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  • Proposed locomotion strategy for a traveling-wave-type omnidirectional wall-climbing robot for spherical surfaces Reviewed

    T. Go, T. Osawa, T. Nakamura

    2015 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics, IEEE-ROBIO 2015   2223 - 2228   2015

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    This paper describes a proposal for a locomotion strategy for an omnidirectional wall-climbing robot for spherical surfaces. This robot was developed for inspecting the walls of ships and gas tanks, which require regular inspection. Because such walls are ferromagnetic, many other wall-climbing robots have been developed. However, the stable movement of such robots is prevented by their small contact area. Conversely, we have developed a travelling-wave-type omnidirectional mobile robot that uses the locomotion mechanism of a snail. This robot travels omnidirectionally and achieves stable movement through its large contact area. Previously, we equipped our traveling-wave-type omnidirectional robot with a permanent magnetic adhesion mechanism and confirmed its wall-climbing ability. Moreover, we installed universal joints to allow this robot to adjust to curved surfaces. In this paper, we model the robot in 3-dimensional space and suggest an omnidirectional locomotion method for spherical surfaces. Through simulation, we verify the availability of locomotion strategy.

    DOI: 10.1109/ROBIO.2015.7419104

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  • Dynamic Characteristic Model for Pneumatic Artificial Muscles Considering Length of Air Tube Reviewed

    Shota Yamazaki, Tatsuya Kishi, Taro Nakamura

    INTELLIGENT ROBOTICS AND APPLICATIONS, ICIRA 2015, PT I   9244   390 - 401   2015

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    Authorship:Last author, Corresponding author   Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (international conference proceedings)   Publisher:SPRINGER-VERLAG BERLIN  

    We developed an earthworm-type 15A pipe inspection robot with pneumatic artificial muscles (PAMs). The movement of the robot is performed by a drive unit that repeatedly expands and contracts the muscle. Pressurized air is supplied to the muscle via an air tube. The robot is required to change the specifications of the tube in accordance with the distance of inspection. When the specifications change, the responses of air transmission and the drive unit also change. To date, the optimum operating condition of the drive unit has been obtained experimentally, but this is an extremely time-consuming problem. Thus, we derive a dynamic characteristic model of the PAMs that considers the length of the air tube. Then, the usefulness of the model is confirmed by comparing its results to experimental values of the artificial muscle.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-22879-2_36

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  • Wave-transmitting method for a travelling-wave-type omnidirectional mobile robot Reviewed

    Masashi Konno, Yutaka Mizota, Taro Nakamura

    INDUSTRIAL ROBOT-AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL   42 ( 1 )   19 - 24   2015

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    Purpose - This paper aims to develop a wave-transmitting mechanism for a travelling-wave-type omnidirectional mobile robot. Existing omnidirectional mechanisms are prone to movement instability because they establish a small contact area with the ground. The authors have developed a novel omnidirectional mobile robot that achieves stable movement by a large ground-contact area. The proposed robot moves by a wave-transmitting mechanism designed for this purpose.
    Design/methodology/approach - To achieve stable movement, a spiral-type travelling-wave-propagation mechanism that mimics the locomotion mechanism of a snail was developed. The mechanism was applied to an omnidirectional mobile robot.
    Findings - The practicality of magnetic attraction was verified in experiments of the wave-transmitting mechanism. Moreover, omnidirectional movement was confirmed in a robot prototype adopting this mechanism.
    Research limitations/implications - The proposed robot will eventually be deployed in human spaces such as factories and hospitals. A mechanically improved version of the robot will be evaluated in load-driving experiments and equipped with control systems.
    Originality/value - This paper proposes an omnidirectional mobile robot with a large ground contact area that moves by continuous travelling waves. The practicability of this mechanism was experimentally confirmed, and a prototype robot achieved omnidirectional movement.

    DOI: 10.1108/IR-10-2014-0401

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  • Throwing operations by manipulator with a 2-DOF variable viscoelastic joint using pneumatic artificial muscles and a magnetorheological brake Reviewed

    T. Nagayama, H. Ishihara, H. Tomori, T. Nakamura

    2015 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND BIOMIMETICS (ROBIO)   2324 - 2329   2015

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    The performance of a robot can be enhanced by increasing its output. However, increasing the output of rigid actuators such as motors and hydraulic actuators will likely increase the weight of the robot. Conversely, organisms such as human beings achieve high output within a short time by accumulating and releasing the elastic energy stored in their muscles (thus providing an instantaneous force). Moreover, the viscoelastic properties of muscle enable organisms to control their instantaneous force outputs and their overall movements. Therefore, in this study, we developed a manipulator with a 2-degree-of-freedom (DOF) variable viscoelastic joint. The manipulator comprises a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle and a magnetorheological (MR) brake. The ability of the manipulator to generate controlled movement from an instantaneous force was tested in a throwing operation. This simple 2-DOF variable viscoelastic manipulator with apparent viscosity control by the MR brakes achieved successful throwing motions.

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  • Improved Automatic Soil-Releasing Mechanism for a Lunar Subsurface Explorer

    Konno Masashi, Sawada Ippei, Nakatake Toyoharu, Nakamura Taro, Kubota Takashi

    The Abstracts of the international conference on advanced mechatronics : toward evolutionary fusion of IT and mechatronics : ICAM   2015 ( 0 )   298 - 299   2015

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    We have been developing a lunar subsurface excavation robot using peristaltic crawling based on an earthworm&#039;s locomotion. In existing robots, the excavated soil must be manually removed by humans. To overcome this limitation, we have been developing a mechanism that automatically removes the excavated soil. This paper presents our new automatic soil-release mechanism and demonstrates the performance of the mechanism using a prototype.

    DOI: 10.1299/jsmeicam.2015.6.298

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  • Development of an endskeleton type power assist suit using pneumatic artificial muscles with amplification mechanism Reviewed

    Hiroki Inose, Kazuya Yokoyama, Hiroya Imamura, Isao Kikutani, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2015 - 41ST ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   4708 - 4713   2015

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    Lifting heavy objects increases the risk of low back pain. In this study, we calculate the load exerted on the human body during an actual lifting operation. To assist lifting, we propose an endoskeleton-like suit that exerts an assistive force. A prototype of the assist suit is developed in this study. The force is exerted by a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle combined with an amplification mechanism. The notion of assistive force was subjectively evaluated by wearers, and confirmed in on a visual analogue scale. The electromyography signals of wearers were decreased, confirming the subjective assist effect.

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  • Development of Delta-Type Parallel-Link Robot Using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and MR Clutches for Force Feedback Device Reviewed

    Masatoshi Kobayashi, Junya Hirano, Taro Nakamura

    INTELLIGENT ROBOTICS AND APPLICATIONS, ICIRA 2015, PT I   9244   410 - 420   2015

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    Force feedback devices have been recently adopted in virtual reality, rehabilitation, and medical training systems. Many of these devices convey the human forces sensed by the impedance control using motors; however, motorized actuators are disadvantaged by low output and backdrivability. To resolve these disadvantages, we developed a delta-type parallel-link robot using pneumatic artificial muscles and magnetorheological (MR) clutches. The artificial muscles deliver high output and backdrivability, while the MR clutches enable fast responses. Moreover, because the stiffness of its pneumatic artificial muscles directly responds to forces, our robot detects human forces without feedback from force sensors. This study introduces the prototype of our delta-type parallel-link robot, and evaluates its performance in elastic movement experiment. Finally, we confirmed that our prototype robot can obtain the stiffness and unloaded condition through its MR clutches without feedback from force sensors.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-22879-2_38

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  • Landing Method for a One-legged Robot with Artificial Muscles and an MR Brake Reviewed

    Hikaru Ishihara, Takahiro Nagayama, Hiroki Tomori, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2015 - 41ST ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   1879 - 1884   2015

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    Bipedal robots capable of various dynamic motions such as walking, running, and jumping have been developed in recent years. In particular, these dynamic motions require high power for short durations of time when the robot kicks off the ground. Furthermore, it is necessary to reduce the impact force that a robot is subjected to when landing during these motions. When humans perform similar motions, they generate an instantaneous high-power force using an elastic element and dampen the impact force using a viscous element in their muscles. Therefore, a robotic leg designed for jumping that relies on these elements has been developed. It uses a straight fiber-type artificial muscle and a magnetorheological (MR) brake. A previously designed one-legged robot was able to jump 82.5 mm using a sliding rail and counter weights; however, it shook upon landing due to an elastic element in its artificial muscles. Here, therefore, an MR brake to dissipate energy is applied to the robotic leg in order to suppress vibration. Landing experiments performed with the newly designed one-legged robot confirm that the proposed method (i.e., using the MR brake) is able to suppress vibrations.

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  • Development of a Hydraulic Artificial Muscle for a Deep-Seafloor Excavation Robot with a Peristaltic Crawling Mechanism Reviewed

    Mamoru Nagai, Asuka Mizushina, Taro Nakamura, Fumitaka Sugimoto, Kensuke Watari, Hidehiko Nakajo, Hiroshi Yoshida

    INTELLIGENT ROBOTICS AND APPLICATIONS, ICIRA 2015, PT I   9244   379 - 389   2015

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    In recent years, observations and explorations of the deep seafloor have been actively pursued. One goal of such explorations is to obtain the samples of seafloor mud and its inclusions. Mud that contains minerals and submarine microorganisms has great potential for studies in biology, geology, and marine science. To contribute to these efforts, we propose a robot using peristaltic crawling to excavate deep seafloor. The robot consists of three parts: excavation, propulsion, and extraction units. The propulsion actuator of the proposed robot must be able to function under water at high pressures. As the first stage in the development, we developed a subunit using an oil hydraulic artificial muscle intended for use in deep sea, and conducted a performance experiment under water pressure. Our results confirmed that the artificial muscle can be used in water pressures of up to 5 MPa.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-22879-2_35

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  • Development of semi-active-type haptic device using variable viscoelastic elements Reviewed

    Masakazu Egawa, Takumi Watanabe, Taro Nakamura

    Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)   9244   421 - 432   2015

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    Recently, the use of haptic technology has been expected in various fields, such as medicine and entertainment. In general, haptic devices are actuated by DC motors. However, DC motors have active rendering and can cause serious accidents when the system runs out of control. On the other hand, systems that employ a brake are stable and intrinsically safe. However, such systems have several haptic rendering limitations. Therefore, we have developed a semi-active-type haptic device using variable viscoelastic elements: an electrorheological (ER) devices and pneumatic artificial muscles. In this paper, we proposed control modes according to the haptic application, and we demonstrate several haptic experiments. Finally, we confirm that the novel semi-active system achieves haptic rendering of friction, viscous friction, virtual wall, and stiffness.

    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-22879-2_39

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  • Vibration Reduction for Water Strider Robot using Leg Springs

    Ryo Shimano, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings of The Sixth International Symposium on Aero Aqua Bio-Mechanisms   240 - 245   2014.11

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  • Satellite, Planetary or Terrestrial Subsurface Explorer Robot Based on Earthworm Locomotion Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Hiroyuki Kitamoto, Asuka Mizushina, Taro Nakamura, Takashi Kubota

    JOURNAL OF ROBOTICS AND MECHATRONICS   26 ( 5 )   660 - 661   2014.10

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    We have developed a small, unmanned explorer robot to investigate the undergrounds of satellites and planets. This paper describes the developed excavation robot, which is based on earthworm locomotion. The robot demonstrates excavation activity at 1/6 of its own weight, mimicking the light gravity conditions of the Moon. We conclude that the robot is suitable for future excavation missions.

    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2014.p0660

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  • Development of a Jumping Robot with Pneumatic Artificial Muscles and MR Brake

    H. Ishihara, H. Tomori, T. Majima, T. Nakamura

    14th International Conference on Electrorheological Fluids and Magnetorheological Suspensions(ERMR 2014)   118   2014.7

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF A HEXAPOD WALKING ROBOT USING A STRAIGHT TYPE ARTIFICIAL MUSCLE THAT CAN CARRY A LOAD OF 300 N

    Ryo Shimano, Hiroki Tomori, Takahumi Miyanaga, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings of the Seventeenth International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots   393 - 400   2014.7

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  • Development of Semi-Active Haptic Device Using ER Device and Artificial Muscles

    Masakazu Egawa, Hiroki Tomori, Taro Nakamura

    14th International Conference on Electrorheological Fluids and Magnetorheological Suspensions(ERMR 2014)   117   2014.7

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Crawling Subsurface Robot for Satellite and Planets : Cutting Experiments of the Front Part of the Excavation Unit for the Model of the Excavation Resistance Reviewed

    49 ( 5 )   p.31 - 264   2014.5

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  • Development of a peristaltic crawling robot for long-distance inspection of sewer pipes Reviewed

    T. Tanaka, K. Harigaya, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   1552 - 1557   2014

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    We have developed a robot that can inspect long distances in thin sewer pipes. Inspections of sewer pipes are necessary to prevent accidents such as road caving accidents. However, thin sewer pipes cannot be easily inspected by existing methods. To solve this problem, we developed a peristaltic crawling robot that mimics earthworm locomotion. This robot comprises six units: five joint parts and a head part with a camera that inspects inside the sewer pipes. As the actuator in the unit is a pneumatic artificial muscle, the robot is driven by air pressure. Air is supplied to each unit through an electric valve mounted directly on the unit, thereby preventing delay in air transfer. We confirmed that the robot can stably drive through horizontal and vertical sewer pipes. In driving tests through a bending pipe, we identified materials for the joint parts that enable the robot to smoothly travel through the pipe. During these tests, we further evaluated the robot's traveling performance by measuring its driving speed through the pipe. © 2014 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2014.6878304

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  • Evaluation of Energy Efficiency of Insertion-Type Peristalsis Pump Using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles Reviewed

    Ryosuke Ban, Yoshiki Kimura, Taro Nakamura

    2014 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND BIOMIMETICS IEEE-ROBIO 2014   315 - 320   2014

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    The purpose of this study is to evaluate the energy efficiency of an insertion-type peristalsis pump and compare it with conventional methods such as the positive-displacement pump and rotodynamic pump. This device can transport high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid-mixture fluids with low applied pressure in small spaces and various places such as the outdoors. In previous studies, the authors showed that this pump can transport water through a vertical pipe and a bent pipe. However, the performance of this devise has not been compared with that of conventional pumps. Thus, this paper evaluates the efficiency of the insertion-type peristalsis pump and has demonstrated that the insertion-type peristalsis pump has excellent energy efficiency.

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF AN OMNIDIRECTIONAL MOBILE ROBOT WITH A SPIRAL-TYPE TRAVELING-WAVE-PROPAGATION MECHANISM Reviewed

    Masashi Konno, Yutaka Mizota, Taro Nakamura

    MOBILE SERVICE ROBOTICS   191 - 198   2014

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    Recently, many omnidirectional mobile robots have been developed, which require omnidirectional mobile mechanisms to allow them to move within narrow, complicated passages. However, existing omnidirectional mobile mechanisms cannot achieve stable movement because of their small contact areas. In this paper, we propose an omnidirectional mobile robot that achieves stable movement through a spiral-type traveling-wave-propagation mechanism based on a snail's locomotion mechanism. To demonstrate the robot's performance, we conducted a driving experiment using a prototype.

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  • Development of delta robot driven by pneumatic artificial muscles Reviewed

    Junya Hirano, Dai Tanaka, Takumi Watanabe, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   1400 - 1405   2014

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    Recently, research of a haptic device that renders human arbitrary-force sense has been accelerating for application in rehabilitation and virtual reality/augmented reality devices. Generally, these devices are actuated by electric motors
    however, the actuators have low stiffness output and low backdrivability. In an effort to counteract these drawbacks, we developed a delta robot actuated by straight-fiber-type pneumatic artificial muscles. This robot renders human arbitrary-force sense without force sensor feedback. Furthermore, this robot has backdrivability derived from the softness of the pneumatic artificial muscles and no backlash because the structure does not use gears. Thus, by adopting a delta mechanism as a haptic device, high stiffness output and low inertia force are realized. In this study, we introduce the development of the delta robot as the prototype of a haptic device and conduct position-control and stiffness-control experiments to examine the device's fundamental properties. From the experimental results, we confirm that end position is controllable by both sides of static and dynamic state, and the stiffness of the end plate is controllable without feedback of the force sensor. © 2014 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2014.6878278

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  • Development of Traveling Wave Type Omnidirectional Wall Climbing Robot using Permanent Magnetic Adhesion Mechanism and Proposal of Locomotion Strategy for the Robot Reviewed

    Tetsuhide Go, Tatsuya Osawa, Teruyoshi Ogawa, Taro Nakamura

    2014 IEEE/ASME INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM)   1000 - 1005   2014

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    This paper describes the development of an omnidirectional wall climbing robot with permanent magnets for inspecting the walls of ships and gas tanks. These features require regular inspection, which is costly and exposes workers to risk. Because such walls are ferromagnetic, they can be monitored by robots with permanent magnets, and many wall-climbing robots have been developed. However, stable movement of such robots is prevented by their small contact area. Previously, we have developed a traveling wave type omnidirectional mobile robot that uses the locomotion mechanism of a snail. This robot travels omnidirectionally and achieves stable movement through its large contact area. We expect that this locomotion mechanism is suitable for wall climbing. In this paper, we have equipped our traveling wave type omnidirectional robot with a permanent magnetic adhesion mechanism, enabling it to climb walls. In locomotion experiments, we confirm that the robot can move omnidirectionally on a horizontal surface (0 degrees), a wall (90 degrees), and a ceiling (180 degrees).

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  • Development of a passive switching cam mechanism for walking assistance using pneumatic artificial muscle Reviewed

    Takuma Kawamura, Marie Noma, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   1486 - 1491   2014

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    As the aged population increases, increasing numbers of people require walking support as the strength of their leg muscles deteriorates. We have developed a flexible power walking assistant system based on pneumatic artificial muscle. To date, the walking assistance effect of this approach has been validated in experiments, but few subjects were recruited. In the present study, we have incorporated pneumatic rubber artificial muscle into a new mechanism, enabling smaller and lighter weight devices for walking assistance. Unlike conventional mechanisms of this type, which require separate artificial muscles for each foot, our proposed mechanism assists both feet by a single artificial muscle. A prototype model of our proposed new mechanism was applied to artificial muscles, and its practicality was evaluated in operational experiments. © 2014 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2014.6878293

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  • Development of an In-pipe Inspection Rovot using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles Based on an earthwarm’s peristaltic crawling Reviewed

    Megumi Ikeuchi, Tatsuya Kishi, Taro Nakamura

    2013 International Workshop on Soft Robotics and Morphological Compulation   24   2013.7

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  • Development of an earthworm inspired robot attached to a colonoscope using bellows-type artificial rubber muscles Reviewed

    Takaichi Yanagida, Kazunori Adachi, Taro Nakamura

    2013 International Workshop on Soft Robotics and Morphological Computation   31   2013.7

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  • Propulsion mechanism for a lunar subterranean excavator using peristaltic crawling Reviewed

    Hiroyuki Kitamoto, Hayato Omori, Hiroaki Nagai, Taro Nakamura, Hisashi Osumi, Takashi Kubota

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   25 ( 3 )   p.466 - 475   2013.6

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    Exploration below the lunar surface has great potential for scientific progress and the future of space explanation. However, as of now, little is known about the environment of the lunar subsurface, but the international space community has plans to explore it. The development of an excavator that can perform underground investigations has been needed, so we have developed one with a peristaltic crawling mechanism. The robot consists of propulsion and excavation units. The propulsion unit consists of three propulsion subunits which together form the peristaltic crawling mechanism. The excavation unit has an earth auger to dig up and transport soil. In this study, we propose a new type of propulsion subunit. It has a belt drive system to facilitate the smooth movement of the propulsion subunits, and it enables the robot to support three subunits. We also perform experiments in which the excavation robot burrows into red soil to depths of up to 600 mm.

    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2013.p0466

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  • Development of a Novel Bio-Inspired Planetary Subsurface Explorer: Initial Experimental Study by Prototype Excavator With Propulsion and Excavation Units Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Taro Murakami, Hiroaki Nagai, Taro Nakamura, Takashi Kubota

    IEEE-ASME TRANSACTIONS ON MECHATRONICS   18 ( 2 )   459 - 470   2013.4

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    We have developed a novel planetary subsurface explorer that is capable of excavating lunar soil and carrying out scientific investigations. Our developed device consists of two units: a propulsion unit and an excavation unit. The propulsion unit that is based on the peristaltic crawling of earthworm maintains the body position and orientation of the robot and also reduces friction, which is the factor that traditionally prevents robots from excavating to significant depths. The excavation unit excavates and clears a space for the robot to tunnel into densely packed soil. In this paper, we discuss strategies for underground excavation. Next, we develop the excavation and propulsion units, and conduct several experiments to test these units. Finally, we develop a prototype subsurface robot with both units integrated in one package. The prototype exhibits good excavation performance in terms of depth reached-430 mm-both under its own full weight and for 1/6 of its own weight. In other words, the prototype shows excellent robustness to the gravity differences on the Earth and the Moon. With appropriate dust removal, operation has been demonstrated to a depth of 650 mm without any slowing down. The same performance is considered possible for much greater depths.

    DOI: 10.1109/TMECH.2012.2222429

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  • Development of Pneumatic Control System for Walking Assist using Dual On/Off valves

    Kenta Takanaka, Taro Nakmura

    the 2013 IEEE International Conference on Mechatronics (ICM)   138 - 143   2013.2

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  • Derivation of mathematical models of the peristaltic crawling robot for maintenance of a mixing tank Reviewed

    Yosuke Morishita, Daisuke Sannohe, Tatsuya Osawa, Tomoya Tanaka, Taro Nakamura

    Nature-Inspired Mobile Robotics   265 - 272   2013.1

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    Mixing tank is a device which is used in a variety of chemicals to stir. When using this apparatus, the controlling temperature in the tank is important. So flow a heat medium or a refrigerant to the internal of the jacket to control it. Although a large amount of deposits are formed in the inner wall of jacket, there is no way to clean up or to inspect inside of the jacket because it's too narrow space and entrance. Therefore, we developed peristaltic crawling robot for vertical narrow space, and realized the locomotion in 50[mm] wide space. In addition to that, we simulate in this robot and do experiment to compare the results of simulation. Also, to achieve driving on curved narrow space in mock-up of the mixing tank.

    DOI: 10.1142/9789814525534_0035

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  • Development of two types of maintenance robots for a jacket inside a mixing tank Reviewed

    Tomoya Tanaka, Taro Nakamura, Daisuke Sannohe, Yousuke Morisita, Mitsugu Tanaka

    Nature-Inspired Mobile Robotics   207 - 214   2013.1

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    In this study, we developed two types of maintenance robots using an artificial rubber muscle driven by pneumatics for a jacket inside a mixing tank. One is an excavation robot for cleaning the inside of the jacket, and the other is a polishing robot for inspecting the walls. The excavation robot consists of four units and three joints. This robot mimics the peristaltic crawling motion of an earthworm. On the other hand, the polishing robot consists of five units, a metal brush and two wing parts. This robot polishes the walls inside the jacket. Two types of experiments were performed with the two robots. One of the experiments was a driving test inside the jacket. The other was to eliminate sediment on the local walls.

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  • Development of a wall climbing robot using the mobile mechanism of traveling waves propagation Reviewed

    Yutaka Mizota, Kazutoshi Takahashi, Yusuke Goto, Taro Nakamura

    Nature-Inspired Mobile Robotics   241 - 248   2013.1

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    Recently, there have been many studies for developing robots that perform tasks instead of humans. In this study, we focus on tasks to be performed at high places above the ground, which can be dangerous and costly. Therefore, a robot having the ability to climb a wall is preferred for an automatic maintenance system, instead of humans. This paper reports the development of a wall climbing robot, for which two new mechanisms have been adopted: a mobile mechanism using traveling wave propagation and an adhesion mechanism using a centrifugal fan. This mobile mechanism modeled the locomotion mechanism of a snail. This mobile mechanism has a large contact area and is extremely stable. Therefore, it can move stably on both smooth and rough surfaces. In this study, we developed a mobile mechanism that uses a traveling wave propagation system. In addition, we developed a wall climbing robot using this mobile mechanism, and conducted climbing experiments on various walls. We confirmed that this robot can climb the walls in the tests.

    DOI: 10.1142/9789814525534_0032

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  • Development of hexapod robot supported mechanically using pneumatic rubber artificial muscles Reviewed

    H. Tomori, Y. Hirata, T. Nakamura, H. Osumi

    Nature-Inspired Mobile Robotics   435 - 442   2013.1

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    Recently, the development of mobile robots is actively pursued. These robots are expected to have high mobility, allowing them to work in various scenarios such as rescue and exploration. Therefore, we focused on the hexapod robot for stable operation in an irregular terrain. We developed a leg using the parallel linkage mechanism and pneumatic rubber artificial muscles, and constructed a model of the legs. The model reproduced the experimental result. Then, we developed a hexapod robot which can support its weight mechanically using these legs, even without a power supply. Also, we demonstrated that our robot could walk. Furthermore, we confirmed experimentally that the robot supported loads that were about 4 times its weight.

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  • Development of Endoscopic Device to Veer Out a Latex Tube with Jamming by Granular Materials Reviewed

    Takaichi Yanagida, Kazunori Adachi, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND BIOMIMETICS (ROBIO)   1474 - 1479   2013

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    This paper describes the development of an endoscopic device that veers out a latex tube with jamming by granular materials. Colorectal cancer can be cured completely if it is discovered and treated early with a large intestine endoscope. A conventional endoscope can screen and heal the inside of the intestine, but such surgery is difficult for doctors, and it can take 300 or more training sessions to learn the technique. Even experienced doctors can occasionally spend an hour to perform this operation. In this study, in order an attempt to solve these problems, we propose an endoscopic device that veers out a latex tube with jamming by granular materials. This device can pass through the sigmoid colon without pulling it up, and because of the jamming transition by granular materials, this robot can also become rigid and take on the shape of the sigmoid colon. Unlike other endoscopic robots, our device can support the endoscope. Thus we can easily perform various functions of the conventional endoscope. Here we describe our approach for insertion of an endoscope. Next, we describe our experiment confirming the efficacy of the jamming transition. We also confirm the availability of a prototype of endoscopic device to veer out a latex tube with jamming by rice granular using a large intestine model has a about 90-degree angle.

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  • Development of an orthosis for walking assistance using pneumatic artificial muscle: A quantitative assessment of the effect of assistance Reviewed

    T. Kawamura, K. Takanaka, T. Nakamura, H. Osumi

    IEEE International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics   2013

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    In recent years, there is an increase in the number of people that require support during walking as a result of a decrease in the leg muscle strength accompanying aging. An important index for evaluating walking ability is step length. A key cause for a decrease in step length is the loss of muscle strength in the legs. Many researchers have designed and developed orthoses for walking assistance. In this study, we advanced the design of an orthosis for walking assistance that assists the forward swing of the leg to increase step length. We employed a pneumatic artificial muscle as the actuator so that flexible assistance with low rigidity can be achieved. To evaluate the performance of the system, we measured the effect of assistance quantitatively. In this study, we constructed a prototype of the orthosis and measure EMG and step length on fitting it to a healthy subject so as to determine the effect of assistance, noting the increase in the obtained step length. Although there was an increase in EMG stemming from the need to maintain body balance during the stance phase, we observed that the EMG of the sartorius muscle, which helps swing the leg forward, decreased, and the strength of the semitendinosus muscle, which restrains the leg against over-assistance, did not increase but decreased. Our experiments showed that the assistance force provided by the developed orthosis is not adequate for the intended task, and the development of a mechanism that provides appropriate assistance is required in the future. © 2013 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICORR.2013.6650350

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  • Development of an exsufflation system for peristaltic pump based on bowel peristalsis Reviewed

    Yoshiki Kimura, Kunihiro Saito, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics: Mechatronics for Human Wellbeing, AIM 2013   1235 - 1240   2013

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    Pumps capable of transporting high-viscosity fluids and solid- liquid mixtures are required during disasters such as floods and liquefactions, and in various industrial settings including sewage treatment and food processing plants. Moreover, it should be easy possible to install such pump systems. Today, turbine-, piston-, and squeeze-type pumps are often used to transport high-viscosity fluids and solid- liquid mixtures. However, these pump types have disadvantages. Turbine-type pumps cannot exert a high discharge pressure and stones often cause some damage to turbines. Piston-type pumps are usually quite large, because a high pressure is needed to transport large quantities of fluid, and squeeze-type pumps are large and complex. Furthermore, it may be difficult to arrange the bent pipes required by these systems because of the high friction between the fluid and pipe walls. Hence, an innovative transport system is desirable. © 2013 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2013.6584263

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  • Development of a wall climbing robot using the mobile mechanism of continuous traveling waves propagation - Development of a mechanism of wave-absorbing Reviewed

    Yutaka Mizota, Yusuke Goto, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics, ROBIO 2013   1508 - 1513   2013

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    Recently, there have been many studies for developing robots that perform tasks instead of humans. In this study, we focus on tasks to be performed at high places above the ground, which can be dangerous and costly. Therefore, a robot having the ability to climb a wall is preferred for an automatic maintenance system, instead of humans. This paper reports the development of a wall climbing robot which consist of the mobile mechanism using continuous traveling wave propagation and the adhesion mechanism using a centrifugal fan. This mobile mechanism modeled the locomotion mechanism of a snail. This mobile mechanism has a large contact area and is stable. Therefore, it can move stably on both smooth and rough surfaces. In this study, we developed the mechanism wave-absorbing for a mobile mechanism that uses continuous traveling wave propagation. In addition, we developed a wall climbing robot using this mobile mechanism, and conducted climbing experiments on various walls. We confirmed that this robot can climb the walls in the tests. As a result, we found that our experimental results were almost the same as those obtained numerically. Further, the proposed robot could climb on wall of various surfaces. © 2013 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ROBIO.2013.6739680

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  • Development and control of 7-DOF artificial muscle manipulator considering redundancy Reviewed

    Takumi Watanabe, Dai Tanaka, Daich Kamo, Taro Nakamura

    IECON Proceedings (Industrial Electronics Conference)   4091 - 4096   2013

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    Recently, a robot's activity has been spreading into the care setting and homes. For these robots to work alongside humans requires them to have the same flexibility as that of the human muscle and ensure safety even if they collide with humans. To satisfy these requirements, we examined pneumatic artificial muscles - which are not only provide high output but are also light, flexible, and safe - as robot actuators. However, the commonly used McKibben-type artificial muscles have several drawbacks. Therefore, we developed straight-fiber-type artificial muscles, which have a contraction ratio and force that surpasses those of McKibben-type artificial muscles. We also developed a 6-DOF manipulator that is actuated by straight-fiber-type artificial muscles. However, since the DOF of this manipulator is less than that of the human arm, it is difficult for the end effector to make detailed movements. To solve this problem, we developed a 7-DOF manipulator, introducing a new mechanism in the joints. In this paper, we introduce a new restraint condition to the inverse kinematic computation of this manipulator and propose the method of redundancy use. Finally, we conduct an experiment following the trajectory and verify the effectiveness of the proposed method. © 2013 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON.2013.6699791

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  • Development of a peristaltic crawling robot for sewer pipe inspection Reviewed

    Kensuke Harigaya, Kazunori Adachi, Takaichi Yanagida, Masato Yokojima, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON MECHATRONICS (ICM)   2013

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    We have developed a robot to inspect narrow sewer pipes. Periodic inspections of sewer pipes are necessary to prevent accidents such as road cave-ins. However, the means to inspect narrow sewer pipe are limited. For example, conventional endoscopes are difficult and sometimes impossible to pass through a complex network of pipes. To address this issue, we developed a peristaltic crawling robot that imitates the locomotion of an earthworm. The actuator of the robot is composed of bellows-type artificial rubber muscles contracting and extending using air pressure. We confirmed that the robot can pass through straight, bent, successively bent, and more complex shaped pipes. The robot can also move in a vertical pipe, a pipe in water, and through pipes coated with lubricant. Finally, we evaluated the robot's traveling performance by measuring its speed.

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  • Validation of the Measuring Condition for a Planetary Subsurface Explorer Robot That Uses Peristaltic Crawling Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Taro Murakami, Hiroaki Nagai, Taro Nakamura, Takashi Kubota

    2013 IEEE AEROSPACE CONFERENCE   2013

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    Subsurface exploration is required to obtain resources such as oil and minerals, and to construct buildings and houses. It would also be necessary in any future expansion of human activity on the Moon or other planets. We have developed a small unmanned planetary subsurface explorer suitable for nascent stages of exploration. The subsurface excavator consists of both propulsion and excavation units, and its movements are based on those of an actual earthworm. The prototype excavator showed good performance in excavation experiments, and it could excavate at the same depth as in its own weight in the case of an excavator that is 1/6th of its own weight using counterweights. It was difficult to obtain and evaluate an underground environment and the right condition for an excavator in the excavation process. Therefore, we improved a propulsion unit equipped with sensors to detect the pushing force in a radial direction and then performed excavation experiments using the improved excavator from a launcher. We discuss data obtained from sensors, the excavation depth and motor torque. Our excavator showed good performance.

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  • Development of two Types of 2-DOF Wrist Joint Driven by Pneumatic Artificial Muscles Reviewed

    Dai Tanaka, Daichi Kamo, Masanori Maehara, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON MECHATRONICS (ICM)   2013

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    The demand for robots engaged in human activities, such as nursing care and housework, is presently growing. In the vicinity of humans, these robots must operate taking into consideration the human safety. Therefore, the actuator in these robots needs to be soft, light, and powerful. To fulfill these demands, we adopted artificial muscles as actuators of the manipulator. However, the McKibben-type artificial muscle commonly used for this purpose is problematic; therefore, we developed a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle that surpasses the output of the McKibben-type. We also developed two types of wrist joint manipulator for the 7-degree-of-freedom (7-DOF) manipulator. In this paper, we compare and evaluate the performance of the two types of wrist joints. Moreover, we propose a control system for this manipulator regarding the joint angle and stiffness. We used the PI control method to control the joint angle, and the torque feedback control method to control the joint stiffness. Finally, we performed experiments to verify the control system.

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  • Development of a 7-DOF manipulator actuated by straight-fiber-type pneumatic artificial muscle Reviewed

    Dai Tanaka, Daichi Kamo, Takumi Watanabe, Masanori Maehara, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE/ASME INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM): MECHATRONICS FOR HUMAN WELLBEING   300 - 306   2013

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    In recent years, robots have penetrated the fields of nursing and housework. These robots are expected to work alongside humans and, therefore, must be secure, safe, and able to collaborate. Thus, robots actuators should be light, soft, and have operating characteristics similar to those of humans. In this regard, pneumatic rubber artificial muscles are of interest as actuators for these robots. However, the McKibben artificial muscle commonly used for this purpose have certain drawbacks. Instead, we developed a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle that surpasses the output and contraction ratio of the McKibben muscle. We also developed a seven degree of freedom manipulator actuated by straight-fiber-type artificial muscles. The main features of this manipulator are the differential gear mechanisms in the shoulder and elbow joints, and the pulley-in-pulley mechanism in the wrist joint. However, to make use these mechanisms, we had to address the issues present in existing manipulators. In addition, we carried out various calculations necessary to design a control system for this manipulator. We performed experiments to verify the performance of the manipulator and control system. We realized steady state position control of the manipulator. However, in the dynamic state, we observed an overshoot in the rise time of the step response and proposed a solution for this issue.

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Crawling Inspection Robot for 1-inch Gas Pipes with Continuous Elbows Reviewed

    Tatsuya Kishi, Megumi Ikeuchi, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE/RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS (IROS)   3297 - 3302   2013

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    This paper describes the development of an inspection robot for use in 1-inch gas pipes.
    These pipes are commonly used in residences and between gas meters and a main pipe that is buried under the road, and they require regular inspection. However, appropriately advanced inspection technologies have not yet been developed. An endoscope, which is the current inspection method, can only be utilized in a limited inspection scenarios. As for robot inspection, current in-pipe robots cannot pass through a 90-degree elbow, which has a radius of curvature equal to its inside diameter (R-c = 1.0 ID). However these elbows are frequently encountered in real-life environments.
    In this study, to solve these problems, we developed a peristaltic crawling robot with pneumatic artificial muscles for use in 1-inch gas pipes. This robot can pass through a 90-degree elbow (R-c = 1.0 ID) in the horizontal and vertical planes. In addition, this robot can be equipped with an endo scope and take videos inside a pipe. However, has been unable to pass through continuous elbows, which are occasionally encountered. For use in real-life environments, a robot is needed that can pass through continuous elbows.
    In this paper, we report the development of a robot that can pass through continuous elbows.

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  • Development of an Insertion-type Peristalsis Pump Reviewed

    Ryosuke Ban, Yoshiki Kimura, Taro Nakamura

    2013 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND BIOMIMETICS (ROBIO)   1710 - 1715   2013

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    Pumps capable of transporting high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid mixtures are essential for emergency situations. Today, those pumps that can transport high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid mixtures centralize pressure at one point and convey a fluid, the size of those pumps also becomes large to put high pressure, and the point that we can set is limited.
    We have previously developed a peristaltic pump based on the bowel mechanism by using an artificial rubber muscle that can transport fluids such as sludge without centralizing pressure. Unfortunately, it is difficult to attach the pump to various structures or manipulate the geometry for easy access. Herein, we focus on earthworm peristalsis as a model mechanism that can induce peristaltic activity in the pipe and transport fluids containing little water.
    We have developed a flexible device which can transport high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid mixtures by applying the peristalsis mechanism of earthworms. In this study we investigate water transport using this insertion-type peristalsis pump in both straight and bent device orientations.

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  • Piaget for the Smart Control of Complex Robotized Applications in Industry.

    Hayato Omori, Jean-Daniel Dessimoz, Hiroki Tomori, Taro Nakamura 0001, Hisashi Osumi

    ICINCO 2013 - Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Informatics in Control, Automation and Robotics   528 - 535   2013

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    DOI: 10.5220/0004425405280535

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    Other Link: https://dblp.uni-trier.de/db/conf/icinco/icinco2013-2.html#OmoriDTNO13

  • Development of 1-DOF manipulator with variable rheological joint for instantaneous force Reviewed

    T. Majima, S. Nagai, H. Tomori, T. Nakamura

    Journal of Physics: Conference Series   412 ( 1 )   2013

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    Highly rigid actuators such as a geared motor or hydraulic actuator are widely used in industrial robots. To obtain high-speed motion, actuators need to increase the actuator output. However, to increase high-rigidity actuators output, it is necessary to make actuators larger. In contrast, humans perform motions with instantaneous force such as jumping or throwing by using muscles. These instantaneous forces are realized by accumulating potential energy to the muscles and the muscles releasing the energy in a short time. Therefore, in this study a 1-DOF manipulator with variable rheological joint for instantaneous force using an artificial muscle and a magnetorheological (MR) brake was developed. In this paper, the method of generating instantaneous force for this manipulator was proposed. Further, the experiment of the proposed method was also conducted. As a result, generating instantaneous force by proposed method was realized. © Published under licence by IOP Publishing Ltd.

    DOI: 10.1088/1742-6596/412/1/012048

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  • Development of bellows-type artificial rubber muscle and application to peristaltic crawling endoscopic robot Reviewed

    Takaichi Yanagida, Kazunori Adachi, Taro Nakamura

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   25 ( 4 )   748 - 754   2013

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    This paper describes the development of bellows-type artificial rubber muscle and a peristaltic crawling robot attached to a large intestine endoscope using the artificialmuscle. Colorectal cancers can be cured completely if they are discovered early with a large intestine endoscope. While the endoscope can be used to screen and heal this cancer, its operation is difficult. In this study, to solve the difficulties, we propose a peristaltic crawling robot to subserve the endoscope. This robot can automatically move forward and pull up slacks. In addition, this robot can traverse bent pipes such as a splenic flexure because of bellows-type artificial muscle. Unlike other endoscopic robots, our robot can be attached to an endoscope, enabling us to benefit from the endoscope's various functions. In this paper, we fabricated a bellows-type artificial muscle that enables the robot to pass through splenic flexures and apply the bellows-type artificial muscle to the robot. In addition we executed performance experiment in a bent pipe and experiment in large intestine.

    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2013.p0748

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  • Vibration control of an artificial muscle manipulator with a magnetorheological fluid brake Reviewed

    H. Tomori, Y. Midorikawa, T. Nakamura

    13TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ELECTRORHEOLOGICAL FLUIDS AND MAGNETORHEOLOGICAL SUSPENSIONS (ERMR2012)   412   2013

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    Recently, proposed applications of robots require them to contact human safely. Therefore, we focus on pneumatic rubber artificial muscle. This actuator is flexible, light, and has high-power density. However, because the artificial muscle is flexible, it vibrates when there is a high load. Therefore, we paid attention to the magnetorheological (MR) fluid. We propose a control method of the MR brake considering energy of the manipulator system. By this control method, MR brake dissipates energy leading to vibration of the manipulator. In this paper, we calculated the energy and controlled the MR brake. And, we deliberated the proposal method by simulation using the dynamic model of the manipulator, and experiment.

    DOI: 10.1088/1742-6596/412/1/012053

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  • Development of a manipulator with an opposed-placement-type ER clutch contributing to collision force reduction Reviewed

    A. Inoue, N. Kanno, M. Yoshikawa, T. Nakamura

    13TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ELECTRORHEOLOGICAL FLUIDS AND MAGNETORHEOLOGICAL SUSPENSIONS (ERMR2012)   412   2013

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    In recent years, human and robots have begun to work together in the fields of medical treatment and welfare. In such environments, robots must be designed to operate safely; thus, reducing collision force when collision is occurred with their human colleagues is essential. In this study, a manipulator with opposed-placement-type electrorheological (ER) clutches is designed to reduce the collision force. The main feature of the manipulator is a structure that sandwiches the link between two ER clutches and equips the link with a pneumatic cushion. The input shaft of each clutch is rotated in the opposite direction via a bevel gear and a spur gear from an electric motor. Because the link can be reversed by switching the clutch, the manipulator can operate in high-speed reverse motion. Position control, reverse motion control and collision experiments were performed to test the effectiveness of the manipulator. The reverse motion control experiment revealed that the manipulator can reverse more rapidly than a conventional manipulator, which is only driven by a motor. From the collision control experiment, it was found that the manipulator can reduce the collision force more effectively than the conventional manipulator.

    DOI: 10.1088/1742-6596/412/1/012012

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  • A Discharging Mechanism for a Lunar Subsurface Explorer with the Peristaltic Crawling Mechanism Reviewed

    Asuka Mizushina, Hayato Omori, Hiroyuki Kitamoto, Taro Nakamura, Hisashi Osumi, Takashi Kubota

    PROCEEDINGS OF 6TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON RECENT ADVANCES IN SPACE TECHNOLOGIES (RAST 2013)   955 - 960   2013

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    To elucidate planetary origins and develop suitable bases for human operations, the subsurface of the planets must be investigated. Previously, we have developed a planetary subsurface excavation robot with the peristaltic crawling mechanism. This robot consists of two units; a propulsion unit and an excavation unit. The propulsion unit operates by peristaltic motion of three subunits, while the excavation unit is fitted with an earth auger. However, because underground soil is not smoothly discharged from the spout when it is below surface, this robot cannot continuously perform subsurface excavation. To solve this problem, we have developed a discharging unit that automatically conveys the soil from the spout to the ground surface. In this paper, we explain the function of the proposed discharging unit. Next, we develop the unit and experimentally evaluate its ability to remove underground soil. The unit is then attached to an excavation robot moving under propulsion. We conclude that the discharging unit can operate efficiently below surface.

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  • Soil cutting experiments and evaluation of an earth auger for a planetary subsurface explorer Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Hiroyuki Kitamoto, Asuka Mizushina, Taro Nakamura, Hisashi Osumi, Takashi Kubota

    RAST 2013 - Proceedings of 6th International Conference on Recent Advances in Space Technologies   941 - 947   2013

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    Recently planetary exploration that has gathered great attention has a possibility to find trace of life, new substances and origin of our planet especially underground. We have therefore developed a planetary subsurface explorer robot with propulsion and excavation units. The prototype robot demonstrated excellent excavation performance. However, both units have been separately controlled to achieve propulsion and excavation motions. In order to effectively combine these systems, it is therefore desirable to understand an excavation process. The purpose of this study is to reveal the process of the cutting resistance of an earth auger by experiments for the first step. First we conduct two experiments, the pushing force experiment and rotation speed to reveal the excavation process, with a developed experimental device. A torque and vertical force are measured with a 6 axial force sensor as the excavation resistance. Next the excavation resistance of the fish tail comprising the auger head is measured. We observe good excavation results and discuss the excavation process. © 2013 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/RAST.2013.6581350

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  • Development and Control of 1-DOF Manipulator Using Electrostrictive Rubber Actuator Reviewed

    H. Tomori, H. Oshika, T. Nakamura, H. Osumi, K. Hashimoto, A. Nozawa

    39TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY (IECON 2013)   4085 - 4090   2013

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    Recently, flexible and light actuators that mimic muscle fibers have been actively researched. Here, we focused on an electroactive polymer (EAP) dielectric elastomer. To construct the actuator, the dielectric elastomer is rolled into a tube, and extended by applying a voltage across its electrodes. In this paper, we experimentally obtained a static characteristic model of the electrostrictive rubber actuator, and proposed a control method. We then incorporated the actuator into a 1-DOF manipulator, and constructed a controller from a mechanical equilibrium model of this manipulator. Finally, the constructed controller was tested in a series of experiments. The angle of the arm fell below the desired angle because of friction in the joint and the spring characteristics of actuators. However, we confirmed that the controller reduced the influence of the load by torque feedback. We also investigated the influence of joint stiffness.

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  • Variable Impedance Control with an Artificial Muscle Manipulator Using Instantaneous Force and MR Brake Reviewed

    H. Tomori, S. Nagai, T. Majima, T. Nakamura

    2013 IEEE/RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS (IROS)   5396 - 5403   2013

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    Highly rigid actuators such as geared motors or hydraulic actuators are widely used in industrial robots. To obtain high-speed motion, it is necessary to increase the actuator output as the robot weight increases. In contrast, humans perform motions using instantaneous force, such as jumping or throwing, via variable stiffness characteristics. We have developed a one-degree-of-freedom manipulator with a variable rheological joint using a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle and a magnetorheological (MR) brake. With the generation of instantaneous force, the dead and rise times decreased compared to the conventional method. After the generation of an arbitrary instantaneous force, we were able to control the robot's arm position by applying an equilibrium force on the joint. Furthermore, we were able to control the vibrations of the arm by controlling the MR brake using an evaluation function.

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF A PERISTALTIC CRAWLING INSPECTION ROBOT WITH PNEUMATIC ARTIFICIAL MUSCLES FOR A 25A ELBOW PIPE Reviewed

    Tatsuya Kishi, Taro Nakamura, Megumi Ikeuchi

    NATURE INSPIRED MOBILE ROBOTICS   301 - 308   2013

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    In this study, we developed a peristaltic crawling robot that can pass smoothly through a 25A 90-degree elbow pipe, whose radius of curvature equals its inside diameter. The actuator of the robot is composed of artificial rubber muscles. The robot performs earthworm-like locomotion by supplying air pressure to the artificial muscles. To enable smooth passage through the elbow pipe, we designed the robot with low friction and devised a variable friction unit with an aluminum sheet. This robot passes through the elbow pipe while retaining speed and maximum friction force as in a straight pipe.

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  • 大腸内視鏡搭載型蠕動運動ロボットの開発

    柳田隆一, 安達和紀, 中村太郎

    日本コンピュータ外科学会誌   392 - 393   2012.10

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF A PROPULSION MECHANISM FOR A LUNAR SUBSURFACE EXCAVASION ROBOT WITH PERISTALTIC CRAWLING MECHANISM Reviewed

    Hiroyuki Kitamoto, Hayato Omori, Hiroaki Nagai, Taro Nakamura, Hisashi Osumi, Takashi Kubota

    Proceedings of International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Automation in Space   2012.9

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  • PATH PLANNING WITH ROBOT’S TRANSFORMATION FOR TRAVELING-WAVE-TYPE MOBILE ROBOT (TORO-IV) Reviewed

    TATSUYA OSAWA, TERUYOSHI OGAWA, TARO NAKAMURA

    Proceedings of the Fifteenth International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines   199 - 206   2012.7

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  • Derivation of Mathematical Models of an Ultrasonic Motor and Influence of Temperature Characteristics Reviewed

    18 ( 15 )   15 - 25   2012.6

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  • Construction of a nonlinear dynamic characteristic model of pneumatic artificial rubber muscle manipulator using the magnetorheological (MR) brake Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Yuichiro Midorikawa, Taro Nakamura

    JOURNAL OF INTELLIGENT MATERIAL SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES   23 ( 9 )   1011 - 1018   2012.6

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    An artificial rubber muscle as an actuator was paid attention in this study because the manipulator was found to be safe to human when it comes in contact with human. However, this actuator vibrates easily with a late response because of the applied air pressure. Then, the magnetorheological brake that uses the magnetorheological fluid with an early response is built into the joint and controls the vibration. In this article, we have grasped the dynamic characteristics of a manipulator by the construction of a model for improvement in the control performance of the magnetorheological brake. Furthermore, the simulation was performed using the model, and efficient braking of the magnetorheological brake was examined.

    DOI: 10.1177/1045389X12438621

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  • 軸方向繊維強化型人工筋肉を用いた小腸検査用多段式蠕動運動型ロボットの開発 : 第1報, 小型ロボットにおける弾性管内の走行と内視鏡との切り離しに関する検討

    安達 和紀, 横島 真人, 樋高 裕也, 中村 太郎

    日本フルードパワーシステム学会論文集   43 ( 3 )   77 - 84   2012.5

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    There are diseases of the small intestine such as Crohn's disease or Polyp that cause Intussusception. These diseases were not discovered before using an conventional endoscope and the small intestine was called "The Dark Continent". Recently, these diseases are inspected by a Double-Balloon Endoscope or Capsule Endoscope. However, the method used for these inspections have a few problems. Therefore, we proposed a new method of inspecting the small intestine. Utilizing our past research, we developed a robot for the small intestine using peristaltic crawling. The robot is attached to a conventional endoscope. When the endoscope reaches the small intestine, the robot is detached from the endoscope and moves forward and observes and treats the afflictions. In this paper, we fabricated the prototype and experimented in an acrylic pipe and elastic tube. In addition, we confirmed that the robot and endoscope can be separated in any place.

    DOI: 10.5739/jfps.43.77

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  • End-Effector Stiffness Control of 6-DOF Artificial Muscle Manipulator Considering Instantaneous Load Reviewed

    TOMORI Hiroki, TANAKA Daisuke, MAEHARA Masanori, KAMO Daichi, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of The Japan Hydraulics & Pneumatics Society   43 ( 3 )   70 - 84   2012.5

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    Robots have entered human life, and closer relationships are being formed between humans and robots. It is desirable that these robots be flexible and lightweight. For this reason, we studied and developed an artificial muscle actuator using straight-fiber-type artificial muscles derived from the McKibben-type muscles, which have excellent contraction rate and force characteristics. Therefore, we developed a 6-DOF artificial muscle manipulator, which has a wider moveable range than that using McKibben-type artificial muscle. However, this manipulator vibrates when receiving a sudden load, because the artificial muscle is flexible. For this problem, we suggest that control of joint stiffness is effective. In this paper, we controlled joint stiffness of the 6-DOF artificial muscle manipulator, and obtained a compliance ellipse of the end-effector. In addition, this manipulator controlled vibration of the end-effector by changing joint stiffness depending on the position of the end-effector.

    DOI: 10.5739/jfps.43.70

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  • Subsurface Explorer Robot with Peristaltic Crawling Mechanism Reviewed

    Takashi Kubota, Hayato Omori, Taro Murakami, Hiroaki Nagai, Taro Nakamura

    ASCE Earth and Space 2012 Conference   15 - 18   2012.4

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  • Nonlinear model of artificial muscle manipulator with MR fluid Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Taro Nakamura

    <I>International symposium on Advanced Motion Control 2012 (AMC 2012)</I>   2012.3

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  • Derivation of nonlinear dynamic model of novel pneumatic artificial muscle manipulator with a magnetorheological brake Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Yuichiro Midorikawa, Taro Nakamura

    International Workshop on Advanced Motion Control, AMC   2012

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    An artificial rubber muscle was used as an actuator in the present study because it was safe for the muscle manipulator to come into contact with the human body. However, this actuator vibrates and can cause late responses because of the air pressure that is applied to the manipulation. We have built a magnetorheological (MR) brake that uses MR fluid with fast response into the joint to control the vibration. In this paper, we have described the manipulator's dynamic characteristics by construction of a model for improvement of the control performance of the MR brake. Furthermore, a simulation was performed using the model and efficient braking by the MR brake was achieved. © 2012 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/AMC.2012.6197020

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  • Estimation of Joint Stiffness Using Instantaneous Loads via an Electromyogram and Application to a Master-Slave System with an Artificial Muscle Manipulator Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Masanori Maehara, Daisuke Tanaka, Hiroyuki Maeda

    ADVANCED ROBOTICS   26 ( 7 )   799 - 816   2012

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    Master-slave systems and human-assisted systems in which robots can work together with humans have been widely developed. Such systems are necessary to communicate human intentions to a robot. Therefore, it is important for these systems to be able to estimate human joint characteristics such as torque, position and stiffness. In this context, we focus on the myoelectric (ME) potential. In many previous studies, an electric motor has been used as an actuator, and the torque and position are estimated from the ME potential. However, the joint stiffness of humans has not been studied extensively. In this study, we propose a method to estimate the stiffness of the human elbow by using antagonistic muscles when an instantaneous load is applied. Furthermore, we apply our method to a 1-d.o.f. manipulator with an artificial muscle. In the case of eccentric contraction, it has been shown that the stiffness of a joint can be estimated solely by an electromyogram of the triceps. Then, the stiffness and angle control of the artificial muscle manipulator that used it as the slave side is proposed. Furthermore, the estimated joint stiffness is set as a desired value for joint stiffness control of the artificial muscle manipulator. Experimental results of stiffness control indicate that the angle and the stiffness of the 1-d.o.f. artificial muscle manipulator can be adequately controlled for a master-slave system. Safer remote control systems can be developed by using this system. (C) Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden and The Robotics Society of Japan, 2012

    DOI: 10.1163/156855312X626334

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  • Development of Peristaltic Crawling Robot with Artificial Rubber Muscles Attached to Large Intestine Endoscope Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Yuya Hidaka, Masato Yokojima, Kazunori Adachi

    ADVANCED ROBOTICS   26 ( 10 )   1161 - 1182   2012

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    The number of large intestine cancer patients has been increasing steadily. An endoscope can be used to diagnose as well as to treat the diseased part of the intestine. A large intestine endoscope is used mainly to examine cancer of the large intestine. However, many doctors have problems handling an endoscope. To resolve this issue, there is demand for a robotic application to assist in inserting the endoscope and straightening the slack from the intestine. We propose a robot that imitates the peristaltic crawling of an earthworm and uses an artificial rubber muscle as an actuator. By attaching the robot to an existing endoscope, it will be possible to move the endoscope forward and pull up the intestine simultaneously, while retaining the functions of the existing endoscope. In this paper, we test the forward and pulling movements of a sliding-air-tube robot in a large intestine of model to evaluate its performance. From these experiments, the robot equipped with the endoscope of 11 mm in the diameter can be moved at the speed that satisfies it. Further, air-emit function is added to this robot and its performance in the large intestine of a dead swine is evaluated. Result of accomplishing experiment by using imitation of endoscope of 8 mm, this robot showed that it had the ability to move the endoscope. (c) 2012 Taylor & Francis and The Robotics Society of Japan

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF A PERISTALTIC CRAWLING ROBOT WITH BELLOWS-TYPE ARTIFICIAL RUBBER MUSCLES FOR SEWER PIPE INSPECTION Reviewed

    Takaichi Yanagida, Taro Nakamura, Masato Yokojima, Kazunori Adachi

    ADAPTIVE MOBILE ROBOTICS   631 - 638   2012

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    In this study, we evaluate the traveling performance of a robot in sewer pipes that imitates the peristaltic crawling locomotion of an earthworm. This robot can pass through complex networks of pipes and pipes coated with lubricating liquids. The actuator of the robot is composed of bellows-type artificial rubber muscles. The robot performs earthworm-like locomotion by supplying air pressure to the artificial muscles. We believe that the developed robot can be used to inspect pipe lines that could not be inspected previously.

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  • Development of an In-pipe Inspection Robot for Narrow Pipes and Elbows using Pneumatic Artificial Muscles Reviewed

    Megumi Ikeuchi, Taro Nakamura, Dai Matsubara

    2012 IEEE/RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS (IROS)   926 - 931   2012

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    Pipe failures resulting from corrosion or other forms of deterioration are a common occurrence. To combat this problem, in-pipe inspections are required Fiberscopes are currently used as industrial endoscopes to inspect pipes for defects. However, because of friction, fiberscopes cannot be inserted into pipes that are more than 15 m long or have complex shapes such as elbows. Therefore, in-pipe inspection robots need to be self-propelling.
    In this study, we developed two robots that mimic the peristaltic crawling motion of earthworms as a locomotion mechanism. These robots consist of several units. Each unit has an artificial muscle that is driven by pneumatics. Each of the robots has an internal space to hold inspection apparatus. We conducted several experiments with a robot inside a 25A acrylic pipe (diameter: 27 mm). These experiments were conducted to examine the relationship between the locomotion speed and motion patterns. The robot was able to pass through the elbows that were positioned in both horizontal and vertical planes. In addition, we developed a smaller robot for a 15A pipe (diameter: 16 mm) to examine the relationship between the locomotion speed and motion patterns. Our findings exhibited good performance by the robots.

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  • USING PNEUMATIC ARTIFICIAL MUSCLE IN DEVELOPMENT OF IN-PIPE INSPECTION ROBOT FOR NARROW PIPES BASED ON AN EARTHWORM'S PERISTALTIC CRAWLING MOTION Reviewed

    Megumi Ikeuchi, Shota Horii, Dai Matsubara, Taro Nakamura

    ADAPTIVE MOBILE ROBOTICS   191 - 198   2012

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    In this study, we developed a robot that mimics the peristaltic crawling motion of earthworms as a locomotion mechanism. This robot consists of five units, each of which has an artificial muscle that is driven by pneumatics. In addition, we performed two experiments in a 16 mm diameter acrylic pipe. These experiments were designed to examine the relationship between locomotion speed and motion patterns. The other is to examine the relationship between traction force and motion patterns.

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  • Motion Control of Instantaneous Force for an Artificial Muscle Manipulator with Variable Rheological Joint Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Suguru Nagai, Tatsuo Majima, Taro Nakamura

    2012 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND BIOMIMETICS (ROBIO 2012)   2012

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    Highly rigid actuators such as a geared motor or hydraulic actuator are widely used in industrial robots. To obtain high-speed motion, it is necessary to increase the actuator output as the robot weight increases. In contrast, humans perform motions with instantaneous force-as in a jump or throw-via variable rheological characteristics. We developed a one-degree-of-freedom manipulator with a variable rheological joint using a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle and a magnetorheological (MR) brake. Then, we created a nonlinear dynamic characteristics model of this manipulator and proposed a method for generating instantaneous force. Furthermore, we validated the proposed method by experiment and simulation. The model reproduced the manipulator system characteristics, and the dead and rise times decreased compared with the conventional method. Furthermore, we controlled the manipulator arm motion by controlling the MR brake both experimentally and via simulation. The results were quite satisfactory.

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  • Path tracking method for traveling-wave-type omnidirectional mobile robot (TORoIII) Reviewed

    Teruyoshi Ogawa, Taro Nakamura

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   24 ( 2 )   340 - 346   2012

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    An omnidirectional movement mechanism is needed that can move a robot in a narrow complicated passage. However, existing mechanisms cannot achieve stable operations. We noted that a snail uses traveling waves and can achieve a stable operation because of a large landing area. We therefore developed a traveling-wave-type mobile robot (TORoIII) using a snail's locomotive mechanism. However, the directions of the robot were restricted by the number of units, i.e., the directions corresponded to the number of units. In addition, to use this robot as an autonomous robot, self-localization method and path planning method are required. At present, these methods for this robot have not been proposed. In this study, we propose a new perfectly omnidirectional locomotion strategy for TORoIII. In addition, we propose odometry based on kinematics and path planning method based on potential method. Furthermore, we propose online path tracking method using the odometry. We experimentally confirmed the utility of these proposed methods.

    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2012.p0340

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  • Development of a peristaltic crawling robot attached to a large intestine endoscope using bellows - type artificial rubber muscles Reviewed

    Takaichi Yanagida, Kazunori Adachi, Masato Yokojima, Taro Nakamura

    2012 IEEE/RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS (IROS)   2935 - 2940   2012

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    This paper describes the development of an endoscopic robot attached to a large intestine endoscope.
    Colorectal cancer can be cured completely if they are discovered and treated early with a large intestine endoscope. Conventional endoscope can screen and heal inside of the intestine. But, operation of the endoscope is hard for doctors; the training is needed many times. In addition, even if experienced doctors, it occasionally spends one hour for this operation.
    In this study, in order to solve these problems, we propose the endoscopic robot using peristaltic crawling with bellows-type artificial rubber muscle. This robot can move forward automatically and pulling up the slack. In addition, because of bellows-type artificial rubber muscle, this robot can also pass bent pipes like splenic flexure. Unlike another endoscopic robot, our robot can be attached the endoscope. Thus we can use various function of the conventional endoscope.
    In this paper, in order to pass splenic flexure, we describe that we fabricated bellows-type artificial muscle. Next, we experimentally confirmed that the robot can pull up the sigmoid colon of the large intestine of dead swine that is arranged in the human body. In addition, in a large intestine model, we reach a endoscope to the cecum with the robot.

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  • Development of a peristaltic pump based on bowel peristalsis improvement of closing area rates and suction pressure measurement Reviewed

    Kunihiro Saito, Yoshihiro Hirayama, Yoshiki Kimura, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings of the IEEE RAS and EMBS International Conference on Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics   949 - 954   2012

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    A pump capable of transporting high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid mixtures is required in various industrial settings, include cement plants, sewage treatment plants and food plants. In addition, growing demand in the medical field. Turbine-type pumps, piston-type pumps and squeeze-type pumps are often used to transport high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid mixture. However, these types of pumps have disadvantages. Turbine-type pumps cannot exert a high discharge pressure and turbine damage caused by stone
    piston-type pumps are usually considerably large, because high pressure is needed to transport large quantities of fluid
    squeeze-type pumps are a large and complex equipment. Furthermore, it can be difficult to arrange the bent pipes required by these systems because of high friction between the fluid and the pipe walls. Hence, an innovative transport system is desired. In this paper, we focus on bowel peristalsis as a model for a mechanism that can transport fluids, such as sludge with little water. We developed a peristaltic pump based on the bowel mechanism by using an artificial rubber muscle, and confirmed its capabilities. In addition, we develop new tube to achieve a perfect close of the tube, and confirm the basic characteristics of the new tube. Finally, we measure the suction pressure and confirm the perfect close of the tube. © 2012 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/BioRob.2012.6290682

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  • Development of peristaltic crawling robot moving between two narrow, vertical planes Reviewed

    Daisuke Sannohe, Yosuke Morishita, Shota Horii, Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings of the IEEE RAS and EMBS International Conference on Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics   1365 - 1370   2012

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    Stirred tanks used in various fields for chemical reactions have double structures and the interior temperatures of the tanks are adjusted by injecting heat media or refrigerants into the interspace of two walls. However, because of impurities included in the medium, a large amount of excrescences are formed on the inner wall, which prevent heat transfer. Moreover, there are currently no techniques or robots that can inspect or clean the interspace. This is owing to the anomalous environment: between two vertical narrow planes. Therefore, we developed a peristaltic crawling robot that realizes the motion by the expansion and contraction of pneumatic artificial muscles for the maintenance of stirred tanks. In this study, we first focused on realizing movement between two vertical narrow planes. We also realized stable horizontal locomotion with a speed of 2.53 mm/s and a new turning motion between two 50-mm-wide vertical planes. © 2012 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/BioRob.2012.6290726

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  • High-Speed Reversal Control of One-Degree-of-Freedom Manipulator by Energy Dissipation Effect of ER Clutches Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Masahiro Yoshikawa, Kazuhiko Boku

    JOURNAL OF INTELLIGENT MATERIAL SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES   22 ( 15 )   1739 - 1743   2011.10

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    In this study, we aim to improve the safety during collisions between a robot and a person by controlling the electric field applied to the ER clutch built into the joint of the robot after a collision. We add energy dissipation to the robot arm by increasing the friction in the ER clutch. Moreover, we examine recoil of a robot arm just after a collision by reversing a motor. In this article, we report on several reversal experiments conducted on a one-link arm that does not undergo collision, and we investigate the energy dissipation effect that can be generated by an ER clutch.

    DOI: 10.1177/1045389X11420589

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF AN OMNIDIRECTIONAL WALL-CLIMBING ROBOT BY USING TRAVELING WAVE PROPAGATION Reviewed

    TARO NAKAMURA, AND TORU HAYAKAWA

    <I>Proceedings of CLAWAR 2011: the 14th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines</I>   165 - 172   2011.9

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  • PROPOSED OMN-IDIRECTIONAL LOCOMOTION STRATEGYFOR TRAVELING-WAVE-TYPE MOBILE ROBOT (TOROIII) Reviewed

    TERUYOSHI OGAWA, MASAYUKI YAMAMOTO, AND TARO NAKAMURA

    <I>Proceedings of CLAWAR 2011: the 14th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines</I>   127 - 134   2011.9

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  • Orbit Tracking Control of 6-DOF Lubber Artificial Muscle Manipulator Considering Nonlinear Dynamics Model Reviewed

    TOMORI Hiroki, MAEDA Hiroyuki, NAKAMURA Taro

    TRANSACTIONS OF THE JAPAN SOCIETY OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERS Series A   77 ( 779 )   2742 - 2755   2011.8

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    Robots have entered human life, and closer relationships are being formed between humans and robots. It is desirable that these robots be flexible and lightweight. For this reason, we studied and developed an artificial muscle actuator using straight-fiber-type artificial muscles derived from the McKibben-type muscles, which have excellent contraction rate and force characteristics. However, these muscles have highly nonlinear characteristics, as well as high compliance and a strong hysteresis characteristic. Hence, it is difficult to control the artificial muscle manipulator. In this study, we developed nonlinear dynamics model of the artificial muscle, investigate nonlinear dynamics characteristics of the muscle. In addition, considering nonlinear dynamic characteristics of the artificial muscle, we implore control speck of 6-DOF artificial muscle manipulator.

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  • POSITION AND VIBRATION CONTROL OF VARIABLE RHEOLOGICAL JOINTS USING ARTIFICIAL MUSCLES AND MAGNETO-RHEOLOGICAL BRAKE Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Yuichiro Midorikawa, Hiroki Tomori

    INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF HUMANOID ROBOTICS   8 ( 1 )   205 - 222   2011.3

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    In recent times, the chances of robot-human contact have increased; hence, safety is necessitated with regard to such contact. Thus, manipulators using a pneumatic rubber artificial muscle, which is lightweight and flexible, are studied. However, this artificial muscle manipulator has faults such as slow response and limited instantaneous power due to operation by air pressure. Because of these faults, uncontrollable vibrations can occur, leading to instability in the arm when an object is held and lifted. In this study, an artificial muscle manipulator with one DOF and a variable rheological joint mechanism using MR fluid is developed. Vibration control of the arm using MR fluid is realized when an object is held and lifted, confirming the reduction in vibration due to the MR effect.

    DOI: 10.1142/S021984361100240X

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  • Self-localization and 3-D model construction of pipe by earthworm robot equipped with omni-directional rangefinder Reviewed

    Atsushi Yamashita, Kenki Matsui, Ryosuke Kawanishi, Toru Kaneko, Taro Murakami, Hayato Omori, Taro Nakamura, Hajime Asama

    2011 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics, ROBIO 2011   1017 - 1023   2011

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    A lot of plumbings such as gas pipes and water pipes exist in public utilities, factories and so on. The use of an omni-directional camera which can take images of 360 deg in surroundings at a time is effective for pipe inspection. However, shape measurement is difficult only with the omnidirectional camera. Therefore, in this paper, we propose a reconstruction method of a piping shape by using a rangefinder constructed with an omni-directional camera and an omnidirectional laser. The rangefinder is mounted on an earthworm robot. Our method calculates 3-D coordinates by the light section method. By integrating the 3-D coordinates with the information of camera motion estimated by the structure from motion technique, the shape of the pipe is reconstructed. The validity of the proposed method is shown through experiments. © 2011 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ROBIO.2011.6181421

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    Other Link: https://dblp.uni-trier.de/rec/conf/robio/2011

  • Joint Stiffness and Position Control of an Artificial Muscle Manipulator for Instantaneous Loads Using a Mechanical Equilibrium Model Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Daisuke Tanaka, Hiroyuki Maeda

    ADVANCED ROBOTICS   25 ( 3-4 )   387 - 406   2011

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    Robots have become an integral part of human life, and the relationship between human and robots has grown closer. Thus, it is desirable for robots to have characteristics similar to those of humans. In this context, we paid attention to an artificial muscle actuator, and studied and developed straight-fiber-type artificial muscles derived from McKibben-type muscles, which have an excellent contraction rate and force characteristics. We developed a manipulator with 6-d.o.f. using artificial muscles as actuators and considered its position control. However, artificial muscle manipulators are susceptible to load torque because they do not use any gears and are flexible. Joint stiffness must increase because accurate position control of the artificial muscle is difficult. Stiffness control must respond quickly to achieve coordination with human activity; however, conventional stiffness control by torque-based methods depends on the position control response. Therefore, position and stiffness control need to be independent of each other. In this study, we propose a new method of joint stiffness control, which adds estimated stiffness to the torque-based method. In addition, we performed experiments examining the load response to steady-state and instantaneous loads. (C) Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden and The Robotics Society of Japan, 2011

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  • Theoretical comparison of McKibben-type artificial muscle and novel straight-fiber-type artificial muscle Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Taro Nakamura

    International Journal of Automation Technology   5 ( 4 )   544 - 550   2011

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    Robots have entered human life, and closer relationships are being formed between humans and robots. It is desirable that these robots be flexible and lightweight. With this as our goal, we have developed an artificial muscle actuator using straight-fiber-type artificial muscles derived from the McKibben-type muscles, which have excellent contraction rate and force characteristics. In this study, we compared the steady state and dynamic characteristic of straightfiber- type and McKibben-type muscles and verified the usefulness of straight-fiber-type muscles.

    DOI: 10.20965/ijat.2011.p0544

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  • High-Speed Reverse Control of a Soft Manipulator using an Electrorheological Clutch Reviewed

    Akio Inoue, Masahiro Yoshikawa, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2011: 37TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE ON IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   2011

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    Recently, humans and robots have started working together in the field of medical treatment and welfare. In such a work environment, it is required that robots operate in a safe manner that avoids collisions or inadvertent contact with their human colleagues. A three degree-of-freedom (3-DOF) soft manipulator with an electrorheological (ER) clutch and a pneumatic cushion sensor has been developed as a robot arm that meets this demand. The buffer method employed in this manipulator reduces the force of a collision by making its joint flexible when a collision occurs. In this study, the power of such an impact is further reduced by developing a method for highspeed reverse control in the event of a collision. However, this method imposes a load on the electric motor when the arm is working under inertia. This problem is solved by dispersing the energy of the arm by using the friction of an ER clutch that is electrically controlled. In this study, several simulations and experiments are conducted on a 1-link arm without collision. We investigate the effects of energy dissipation and confirm highspeed reverse control in a 1-link arm.

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Pump Based on Bowel Peristalsis using Artificial Rubber Muscle Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Kazuyuki Suzuki

    ADVANCED ROBOTICS   25 ( 3-4 )   371 - 385   2011

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    The transportation of high-viscosity fluid and solid-liquid mixtures is required in various settings, such as food plants and petroleum plants, and in various fields, including the civil engineering field and the medical field. A volume-type pump is often used to transport these fluids. This type of pump is usually quite large, since high pressure is needed to transport large quantities of fluid. Furthermore, it can be difficult to arrange the bent pipes needed by the system, since there is a lot of friction between the fluid and the pipe. Hence, the development of an innovative transport system is desired. We focused on bowel peristalsis as a model for a mechanism that can transport these fluids, such as sludge with little water. In this study, we developed a peristaltic pump based on the bowel mechanism by using artificial rubber muscle and confirmed its capability. In addition, we fabricated a peristaltic pump of six units and conducted liquid transportation experiments as an operational check. (C) Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden and The Robotics Society of Japan, 2011

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  • The position and vibration control of the artificial muscle manipulator by variable viscosity coefficient using MR brake Reviewed

    Suguru Nagai, Hiroki Tomori, Yuichiro Midorikawa, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2011: 37TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE ON IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   2011

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    In this study, an artificial rubber muscle was selected as an actuator because it is safe to be used as a muscle manipulator that comes into contact with the human body. However, this actuator vibrates and can cause delayed responses because of the air pressure that is applied to the manipulation. We built a magnetorheological (MR) brake that uses MR fluid with a fast response into the joint to control the vibration. In this study, we focus on the variable damping of the MR brake. By variable damping of the MR brake, we could apply the brake torque depending on the rotational speed of the arm in response to the artificial muscle manipulator. Moreover, we could control the viscosity coefficient of the manipulator depending on its angle and calculate the optimum brake torque as an indicator. As a result, we found that the manipulator's lifting operation was more stable without any sudden movement. We evaluated various aspects of the manipulator control to determine the best indicator of the viscosity coefficient, and studied the position control of an artificial muscle manipulator using these methods.

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  • HIGH SPEED SWITCHING CONTROL OF 1DOF MANIPULATOR USING ER CLUTCH Reviewed

    Masahiro Yoshikawa, Kazuhiko Boku, Taro Nakamura

    ELECTRO-RHEOLOGICAL FLUIDS AND MAGNETO-RHEOLOGICAL SUSPENSIONS   68 - 73   2011

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    Recent advances in robotics have resulted in robots working in close proximity with humans. As a consequence, safety issues are becoming increasingly important, for example when a collision unexpectedly occurs between a robot and a person. To address such a scenario, a 3-DOF soft manipulator has been developed that incorporates an electrorheological (ER) clutch and a pneumatic sensor. The pneumatic sensor is used to decrease the impact force, while the ER clutch also decreases the collision force by making the robotic joint flexible during a collision. In this study, we aim to further improve the safety during collisions between a robot and a person by controlling the electric field applied to the ER clutch after a collision. We add energy dissipation to the robot arm by increasing the friction in the ER clutch. Moreover, we examine recoil of a robot arm just after a collision by reversing a motor. In this paper, we report on several reversal experiments conducted on a 1-link arm that does not undergo collision, and we investigate the energy dissipation effect that can be generated by an 45ER clutch.

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  • Development of a manipulator with straight-fiber-type artificial muscle and differential gear mechanism Reviewed

    Daichi Kamo, Masanori Maehara, Daisuke Tanaka, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2011: 37TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE ON IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY   2011

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    In recent years, the demand for a robot that plays an active part in medical treatment and nursing has been increasing. The robot that interacts with humans should not only have a high output but should also be safe and flexible. We adopted a pneumatic artificial muscle as an actuator of the robot manipulator to satisfy these requirements. Pneumatic artificial muscles are lightweight and have a high power output. However, a McKibben-type artificial muscle commonly used for this purpose is problematic; therefore, we developed a straight-fiber-type artificial muscle that surpasses the McKibben-type in regard to its output. We also developed a two degrees of freedom artificial muscle manipulator with a differential gear mechanism, which can double the stiffness output of the conventional manipulator. Moreover, we propose a control system for this manipulator about joint angle and stiffness. We controlled the joint angle using the PI control method, and controlled joint stiffness by the torque feedback control method. Finally, we performed experiments to verify control system.

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  • NONLINEAR DYNAMIC CHARACTERISTIC MODEL OF ARTIFICIAL RUBBER MUSCLE MANIPULATOR USING MR BRAKE Reviewed

    Hiroki Tomori, Yuichiro Midorikawa, Taro Nakamura

    ELECTRO-RHEOLOGICAL FLUIDS AND MAGNETO-RHEOLOGICAL SUSPENSIONS   136 - 141   2011

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    An artificial rubber muscle was paid to attention as an actuator in the present study because human was safe for the manipulator to have come in contact with human. However, this actuator occurs easily the vibration, and is late the response because of applying the air pressure. Then, the MR brake that uses the MR fluid with an early response is built into the joint, and controls the vibration. In this paper, we have grasped a manipulator's dynamic characteristics by construction of a model for improvement in the control performance of MR brake. Furthermore, the simulation was performed using the model and efficient breaking of MR brake was examined.

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Pump Based on Bowel Peristalsis Verification of the basic characteristic considered change of motion patterns Reviewed

    Yoshihiro Hirayama, Kazuyuki Suzuki, Taro Nakamura

    2011 IEEE/ASME INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM)   748 - 753   2011

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    A pump that is capable of transporting high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid mixtures is required in disasters such as flood and liquefaction, and in various industrial settings including sewage treatment plants and food plants. Moreover, it should be as easy as possible to install such a pump system. Turbine-type pumps and piston-type pump are often used to transport high-viscosity fluids and solid-liquid mixture fluids. However, these types of pumps have disadvantages. Turbine-type pumps cannot exert a high discharge pressure; piston-type pumps are usually considerably large, because high pressure is needed to transport large quantities of fluid. Furthermore, it can be difficult to arrange the bent pipes required by these systems because of high friction between the fluid and the pipe walls. Hence, an innovative transport system is desired.
    In this paper, we focus on bowel peristalsis as a model for a mechanism that can transport fluids, such as sludge with little water. We developed a peristaltic pump based on the bowel mechanism by using an artificial rubber muscle and confirmed its capabilities. In addition, we discuss the discharge pressure and solid-liquid mixture transport to verify the basic characteristics of the pump. We confirm that the discharge pressure value is close to the supplied air pressure, and it is possible to vertically transport a solid-liquid mixture that contains a large amount of solid.

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  • Development of endoscopic robot and experiment in the large intestine of dead swine Reviewed

    Kazunori Adachi, Masato Yokojima, Yuya Hidaka, Taro Nakamura

    2011 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics, ROBIO 2011   467 - 472   2011

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    This paper describes the development of an endoscopic robot. A number of patients of a colorectal cancer increase. However, colorectal cancer can be cured completely if they are discovered and treated early with a large intestine endoscope. In inspecting the large intestine, doctors use the endoscope because it can supply the air and water, and treat the large intestine. However, because the large intestine is so long and has a slack as the sigmoid colon and transverse colon, doctors must straighten the slack in order to insert the endoscope. Because of this hard operation, patients feel pain and get uncomfortable. In addition, the training is needed about 150 times, even if experienced doctors, it spends one hour for this operation. In this study, in order to solve these problems, we developed endoscopic robot with artificial rubber muscle using peristaltic crawling. Unlike another endoscopic robot, our robot can attach the endoscope. For other function of the endoscope, moving forward automatically and pulling up the slack can be feasible. In this study, we confirmed that the robot can pull up the sigmoid colon of the large intestine model that is arranged in the human body model. Next, in order to move forward in the large intestine of dead swine, we fabricated new mechanism. Then, we executed two experiments: one is the experiment of moving forward, and other is the experiment of pulling up the intestine. From those experimental results, the moving forward and pulling motion was confirmed. © 2011 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ROBIO.2011.6181330

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  • Development of multistage type endoscopic robot based on peristaltic crawling for inspecting the small intestine Reviewed

    K. Adachi, M. Yokojima, Y. Hidaka, T. Nakamura

    IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, AIM   904 - 909   2011

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    This paper describes the development of an endoscopic robot that can be used for inspecting the small intestine. © 2011 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/AIM.2011.6027001

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  • Planetary subsurface explorer robot with propulsion units for peristaltic crawling Reviewed

    H. Omori, T. Murakami, H. Nagai, T. Nakamura, T. Kubota

    Proceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation   649 - 654   2011

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    We have developed an exclusive planetary subsurface explorer robot with propulsion and excavation units. In this paper, we first explain the concept of our underground explorer robot. Next we develop an excavation unit with a tapered earth auger and a propulsion unit with dual pantograph. Several experiments are performed to demonstrate these features. Finally, we develop a subsurface explorer robot with propulsion and excavation units. Excavation experiments are successfully conducted using the excavator alone and at lighter weights. We show that the excavator can begin boring from a launcher, and in case of excavator of 1/6 of its own weight, it successfully excavates at the same depth as in its own weight. This demonstrates that this novel excavator is expected to accomplish future missions on other planets and the moon. © 2011 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ICRA.2011.5979824

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  • Development of an Elephant’s Trunk-Type Hyper-Redundant Manipulator Constituted of 3-RRS Parallel Link Mechanisms Reviewed

    Tomori Ohtaka, Atsushi Kusumoto, Taro Nakamura

    <I>Proceedings of 1st International Conference on Applied Bionics and Biomechanics (ICABB-2010)</I>   2010.10

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  • Development of 3-DOF Soft Manipulator with ER Fluid Clutches Reviewed

    Kazuhiko Boku, Taro Nakamura

    JOURNAL OF INTELLIGENT MATERIAL SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES   21 ( 15 )   1563 - 1567   2010.10

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    With robots and users more commonly sharing space such as in the fields of medicine and home automation, the possibility of a physical collision has increased, even though many robots use actuators with high-ratio gear trains to minimize the effects of impact. We developed a 3-DOF manipulator having a smart flexible joint using an ER fluid and a sensor-equipped pneumatic cushion. Results of position control and collision experiments using the manipulator demonstrated its effectiveness.

    DOI: 10.1177/1045389X09351758

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  • Development of an In-Pipe Peristaltic Crawling Mobile Robot and Derivation of Theoretical Model Reviewed

    Shota Horii, Taro Nakamura, Kohei Aoki

    <I>Proceedings of 1st International Conference on Applied Bionics and Biomechanics (ICABB-2010)</I>   2010.10

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  • Peristaltic Crawling Robot with Artificial Rubber Muscles Attached to Large Intestine Endoscope (2010.10) Reviewed

    Yuya Hidaka, Masato Yokojima, Taro Nakamura

    <I>Proceedings of 1st International Conference on Applied Bionics and Biomechanics (ICABB-2010)</I>   2010.10

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF AN IN-PIPE MOBILE ROBOT FOR USE AS AN INDUSTRIAL ENDOSCOPE BASED ON AN EARTHWORM’S PERISTALTIC CRAWLING Reviewed

    SHOTA HORII, TARO NAKAMURA, KOHEI AOKI

    <I>Proceedings of International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines|rn| (CLAWAR2010)</I>   141   141 - 149   2010.8

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  • An Earth Auger as Excavator for Planetary Underground Explorer Robot Using Peristaltic Crawling Reviewed

    H. Omori, T. Murakami, H. Nagai, T. Nakamura|rn, T. Kubota

    <I>Proceedings of The 10th International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Automation in Space]</I> (i-SAIRAS2010)   784   784 - 789   2010.8

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  • 等価伝達関数を用いたリライアブル制御手法の故障個所判定 Reviewed

    石川薫, 中村太郎, 大隅久

    計測自動制御学会産業論文集   9 ( 8 )   53 - 60   2010.8

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  • Development of mobile robots based on peristaltic crawling of an earthworm Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Taro Nakamura, Tomohide Iwanaga, Takeshi Hayakawa

    Robotics : Current and Future Challenges   230 - 299   2010.2

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  • Estimation of joint stiffness using EMG and application to master-slave system with an artificial muscle manipulator Reviewed

    M. Maehara, D. Tanaka, H. Maeda, T. Nakamura

    Proceedings - IEEE International Workshop on Robot and Human Interactive Communication   743 - 748   2010

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    A master-slave system has been used to operate a robot. This system is necessary to communicate human intentions to the robot. In this context, we focus on Myo-Electric (ME) potential. In many previous studies, a motor is used as an actuator, and the torque and position are estimated from the ME potential. However joint stiffness, which humans can change, is not considered. It is possible to solve this problem about the actuator by using the artificial muscle that we have studied, because the muscle can adjust joint stiffness. Therefore, it is necessary to estimate the joint stiffness of humans. In this study, we propose a method to estimate the stiffness of a human elbow. Furthermore, we apply our method to the 1-DOF manipulator of the artificial muscle. © 2010 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ROMAN.2010.5598703

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Pump Based on Bowel Peristalsis Using for Artificial Rubber Muscle Reviewed

    Kazuyuki Suzuki, Taro Nakamura

    IEEE/RSJ 2010 INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS (IROS 2010)   2010

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    The global water shortage has recently been debated at the United Nations. The main cause of this shortage is the excessive use of water resources by humans. Therefore, a positive approach to saving water is needed. Much water is used to flush toilets in homes. Thus, it is necessary to develop a sewage disposal system that saves water. We focused on the bowel peristalsis as a model for a mechanism that can transport sludge with little water. In this paper, we suggest a mechanism that uses such a pump and confirmed its capability. In addition, we fabricated a peristaltic pump of six units, and conducted liquid transportation experiments as an operational check.

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  • PERISTALTIC CRAWLING ROBOT WITH ARTIFICIAL RUBBER MUSCLES FOR LARGE INTESTINE ENDOSCOPY Reviewed

    Yuya Hidaka, Taro Nakamura, Yuki Hori

    MOBILE ROBOTICS-SOLUTIONS AND CHALLENGES   225 - 232   2010

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    The number of large intestinal cancer patients has been increasing steadily. An endoscope is used in diagnosis as well as in treatment of the diseased part of the intestine. A large intestine endoscope is used mainly for the inspection of large intestinal cancers. However, many doctors experience issues in handling the endoscope. Thus, a robotic application to assist in inserting the endoscope and remove slack from the intestine is anticipated. We propose a robot that mimics the peristaltic crawling of earthworms and uses an artificial rubber muscle as an actuator. This paper describes how we performed four experiments: 1) determining the relationship between the contraction/expansion values and inner pressure of the artificial muscle; 2) forward movement tests in an acrylic tube; 3) determining the robot's ability to pull an acrylic tube; and 4) forward and pulling movement tests in a large intestinal model. Satisfactory performances were obtained from the experiments.

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  • Locomotion strategies for an omni-directional mobile robot using traveling waves propagation Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Kuniaki Sato

    Proceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation   3769 - 3774   2010

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    In this study, we present an omni-directional mobile robot based on the locomotion of a snail. The snail moves by propagating traveling waves from its tail to its head. If it were possible to propagate a traveling wave in several directions, an omni-directional mobile robot could be realized. Since the locomotion mechanism of the snail involves moving a larger area than in the case with other creatures, it is able to move not only on irregular ground such as swamps, but also on walls and ceilings. We have developed an omni-directional mobile robot that makes use of a traveling wave and have derived a kinematical model for locomotion strategy. In experiments, the robot showed good performance, as described in this paper. ©2010 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ROBOT.2010.5509838

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF AN EXCAVATION ROBOT BASED ON AN EARTHWORM'S PERISTALTIC CRAWLING Reviewed

    Hiroaki Nagai, Taro Nakamura, Hayato Omori, Taro Murakami

    EMERGING TRENDS IN MOBILE ROBOTICS   1089 - 1096   2010

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    Development of a small and light robot that can excavate by itself is required for planetary exploration. The robot conducts in situ analysis of geological samples and deploys devices for measurement and observation to investigate the underground of a planet. Although excavation robots have been developed, they have satisfied a demand that did not yet exist. Then we focussed on the peristaltic crawling of an earthworm as a locomotion mechanism and developed a small excavation robot. First, we proposed that the excavation robot should consist of two parts: propulsion and excavation. We use an earth auger for the excavation part. The propulsion part moves by peristaltic crawling and it must restrain the unit against the rotation reaction of the earth auger. Therefore, we constructed a peristaltic crawling robot that has a dual-pantograph mechanism. Finally, we measured the basic properties and features of a unit working in dirt. Also, we confirmed that the robot can move vertically, both upwards and downwards, in an acrylic pipe. Good performance was observed in the experiments.

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  • Development of a wave propagation type wall-climbing robot using a fan and slider cranks Reviewed

    T. Hayakawa, T. Nakamura, H. Suzuki

    Proceedings of <I>12th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines</I>|rn|(CLAWAR2009)   439   439 - 446   2009.9

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  • 位置サーボ系における電流フィードバック欠損時の等価伝達関数を用いたリライアブル制御 Reviewed

    石川薫, 中村太郎, 大隅久

    計測自動制御学会産業論文集   9 ( 16 )   2009.8

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  • Excavation Mechanism for a Planetary Underground Explorer Robot Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Taro Nakamura, Takayuki Yada, rn|Taro Murakami, Hiroaki Nagai

    <I>Proceedings of The joint conference of the 41st International Symposium on Robotics (ISR 2010)</I>   1273 - 1279   2009.6

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  • Variable Rheological Joints Using an Artificial Muscle Soft Actuator and Magneto-Rheological Fluids Brake Reviewed

    Yuichiro Midorikawa, Taro Nakamura

    INTELLIGENT ROBOTICS AND APPLICATIONS, PROCEEDINGS   5928   504 - 514   2009

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    In recent times, the chances of robot-human contact have increased; hence, safety is necessitated with regard to such contact. Thus, manipulators using a pneumatic rubber artificial muscle, which is lightweight and flexible, are studied. However, this artificial muscle manipulator has faults such as slow response and limited instantaneous power due to operation by air pressure. Because of these faults, uncontrollable vibrations can occur, leading to instability in the arm when an object is held and lifted. In this study, an artificial muscle manipulator with 1 DOF and a variable rheological joint mechanism using MR fluid is developed. Vibration control of the arm using MR fluid is realized when an object is held and lifted, confirming the reduction in vibration due to the MR effect.

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  • Development of 3 DOF manipulator using ER fluid clutches for reduction of collision force Reviewed

    Kazuhiko Boku, Taro Nakamura

    Journal of Physics: Conference Series   149 ( 1 )   p.012002   2009

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    With robots and users more commonly sharing space such as in the fields of medicine and home automation, the possibility of a physical collision has increased, even though many robots use actuators with high-ratio gear trains to minimize the effects of impact. We developed a 3-DOF manipulator having a smart flexible joint using an ER fluid and a sensor-equipped pneumatic cushion. Results of position control and collision experiments using the manipulator demonstrated its effectiveness. © 2009 IOP Publishing Ltd.

    DOI: 10.1088/1742-6596/149/1/012002

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  • Reliable control using disturbance observer and equivalent transfer function for position servo system in current feedback loop failure Reviewed

    Kaoru Ishikawa, Taro Nakamura, Hisashi Osumi

    IEEJ Transactions on Electronics, Information and Systems   129 ( 12 )   2194 - 2200   2009

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    A reliable control method is proposed for multiple loop control system. After a feedback loop failure, such as case of the sensor break down, the control system becomes unstable and has a big fluctuation even if it has a disturbance observer. To cope with this problem, the proposed method uses an equivalent transfer function (ETF) as active redundancy compensation after the loop failure. The ETF is designed so that it does not change the transfer function of the whole system before and after the loop failure. In this paper the characteristic of reliable control system that uses an ETF and a disturbance observer is examined by the experiment that uses the DC servo motor for the current feedback loop failure in the position servo system. © 2009 The Institute of Electrical Engineers of Japan.

    DOI: 10.1541/ieejeiss.129.2194

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  • Reliable Control During Current Loop Failure Using ETF for Position Servo System including Disturbance Observer Reviewed

    K. Ishikawa, T. Nakamura, H. Osumi

    ICRA: 2009 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION, VOLS 1-7   1041 - 1046   2009

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    A reliable control method is proposed for multiple loop control systems. If a feedback loop fails (e.g., as a result of a sensor breakdown), the control system develops an unstable fluctuation. To cope with this problem, the proposed method uses an equivalent transfer function (ETF) for active redundancy compensation after loop failure. The ETF is used to maintain the transfer function of the entire system the same before and after loop failure. In this study, the characteristics of a reliable control system that uses an ETF were examined experimentally. A position servo system including a disturbance observer is used in the experiment. In case of feedback loop failure, the control system could not be stabilized using the disturbance observer alone; however, the ETF stabilized the control system after feedback loop failure.

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  • An underground explorer robot based on peristaltic crawling of earthworms Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Taro Nakamura, Takayuki Yada

    INDUSTRIAL ROBOT-AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL   36 ( 4 )   358 - 364   2009

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    Purpose - An earthworm moves by peristaltic crawling which brings a large surface into contact during motions and requires less space than other mechanisms. A peristaltic crawling is suitable for moving in excavated space by an anterior (front) of a robot. Therefore, a peristaltic crawling robot is useful for an underground explorer. The purpose of this paper is to develop a peristaltic crawling robot with several parallel links and compare with motion of an actual earthworm. Then we had some experiments on a plane surface and in a tube, and in vertical perforated dirt.
    Design/methodology/approach - The proposed robot, which consists of several parallel mechanisms, has four units for being controlled in 3-DOF. A unit expands in a radial direction when it contracts to increase the friction between the unit and surroundings. Dustproof covering is attached for preventing dirt from getting inside units. Locomotion mechanism is as the same as an actual earthworm's peristaltic crawling. The robot makes an anterior unit contract, and then the contraction propagates towards the posterior (rear). Therefore, it requires no more space than that of an excavation part on the front of the robot.
    Findings - It was found that three units of robot consists of several parallel mechanisms had wide range of manipulation; four units of robot moves with peristaltic crawling compared with motion of an actual earthworm. it was confirmed that the robot could turn on a plane surface and move upward and downward in a vertical pipe. Finally, the robot could move in vertical perforated dirt faster than in a pipe.
    Originality/value - The robot is designed with several parallel links and equipped with dustproof covering. The locomotion of an actual earthworm is videotaped and analysed for comparing with the analysed movements of the robot. it was confirmed the robot could move with peristaltic crawling and turn on a plane surface. In addition, it was confirmed that some experiments were done in a narrow pipe and in vertical perforated dirt.

    DOI: 10.1108/01439910910957129

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  • Development of a 6-DOF Manipulator Actuated with a Straight-Fiber-Type Artificial Muscle Reviewed

    Hiroyuki Maeda, Hidekazu Nagai, Taro Nakamura

    2009 IEEE-RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT ROBOTS AND SYSTEMS   607 - 612   2009

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    Robots have become an integral part of human life, and the relationship between humans and robots has grown closer. Thus, it is desired that robots have characteristics similar to humans. In this context, we paid attention to an artificial muscle actuator. We used straight-fiber-type artificial muscles, derived from the McKibben type, which have excellent characteristics with respect to the contraction rate and force. We developed a 6-DOF manipulator actuated by a straight fiber artificial muscle. Furthermore, we tried to control the manipulator position by considering its characteristics.

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  • Joint Stiffness and Position Control of an Artificial Muscle Manipulator Considering Instantaneous Load Reviewed

    Daisuke Tanaka, Hiroyuki Maeda, Taro Nakamura

    IECON: 2009 35TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOLS 1-6   2128 - 2133   2009

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    In recent years, robots have been used in medicine and everyday life. Therefore, it is desirable that these robots be flexible and lightweight. For this reason, we have studied and developed straight-fiber-type artificial muscles derived from McKibben-type muscles, which have excellent contraction rate and force characteristics. Last year, we developed a manipulator with six degrees of freedom using artificial muscles as actuators, and have considered its position control. However, artificial muscle manipulators are susceptible to load torque because they do not use any gears and are flexible. Joint stiffness must increase because accurate position control of the artificial muscle is difficult. The stiffness control must respond quickly to achieve coordination with human activity. However, conventional stiffness control by torque-based methods depends on the position control response. Therefore, position control and stiffness control need to be independent.
    In this study, we propose a new method of joint stiffness control, which adds estimated stiffness to the torque-based method. In addition, we performed experiments examining load response to the steady state and instantaneous loads.

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  • Reliable control using ETF and FDI during current loop failure for position servo system including disturbance observer Reviewed

    Atsutoshi Karino, Kaoru Ishikawa, Taro Nakamura

    IECON Proceedings (Industrial Electronics Conference)   3156 - 3161   2009

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    A reliable control method is proposed to cope with an unstable fluctuation caused by a loop failing in a multiple-loop control system. In this study, reliable control was applied to a Position servo system that was made to examine the reliable control method in an industrial machine and study its characteristics. The system uses an equivalent transfer function (ETF) for active redundancy compensation after a loop failure and has a fault detection and isolation scheme for the loop failure. The principle of the transfer function is that when a sensor is broken down and the sensor information cannot be acquired, the transfer function of the system differs from a transfer function of the normal system, hence the compensator (the ETF) that conforms the transfer function of the failing system to the transfer function of the normal system stabilizes the failing system. The ETF compensates for the failure of a system using software such that the failing system continues to be in control by switching the normal control program to the control program including compensation for the failing. In this study, the system including the ETF is analysed experimentally. ©2009 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/IECON.2009.5415305

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  • Development of an underground explorer robot based on peristaltic crawling of earthworms Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Taro Nakamura, Takayuki Yada

    <I>Proceedings of 11th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines</I> (CLAWAR2008)   1053 - 1060   2008.9

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  • Development of Soft Manipulator with Variable Rheological Joints and Pneumatic Sensor for Collision with Environment Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Yuki Akamatsu, Yuta Kusaka

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   20 ( 4 )   634 - 640   2008.4

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  • Reliable Control Using Equivalent Transfer Function for Position Servo System in Current Loop Failure Reviewed

    Kaoru Ishikawa, Taro Nakamura, Hisashi Osumi

    IECON 2008: 34TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY, VOLS 1-5, PROCEEDINGS   284 - 288   2008

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    A reliable control method is proposed for multiple loop control systems. If a feedback loop fails (e.g., as a result of a sensor breakdown), the control system develops an unstable fluctuation. To cope with this problem, the proposed method uses an equivalent transfer function (ETF) for active redundancy compensation after the loop failure. The ETF does not change the transfer function of the entire system before and after the loop failure. In this study, the characteristics of a reliable control system that uses an ETF are examined using an experimental method. A position servo system with a DC servo motor is used in the experiment. The ETF is used for motor control after current feedback loop failure.

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  • Position and Compliance Control of an Artificial Muscle Manipulator using a Mechanical Equilibrium Model Reviewed

    Hiroyuki Maeda, Hidekazu Nagai, Hirotomo Saito, Taro Nakamura

    IECON 2008: 34TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IEEE INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS SOCIETY, VOLS 1-5, PROCEEDINGS   3317 - 3322   2008

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    Robots have entered human life, and closer relationships are being formed between humans and robots. It is desirable that these robots be flexible and lightweight. For this reason, we studied and developed an artificial muscle actuator using straight-fiber-type artificial muscles derived from the McKibben-type muscles, which have excellent contraction rate and force characteristics. However, these muscles have highly nonlinear characteristics, as well as high compliance and a strong hysteresis characteristic. Hence, it is difficult to control the artificial muscle manipulator.
    In this study, a mechanical equilibrium model is introduced to control this manipulator, and the position control characteristic is linearized, making compliance control possible. In addition, considering dynamic characteristics of the artificial muscle, we apply an "inner model control" for position control.

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  • Development of an omni-directional mobile robot using traveling waves based on snail locomotion Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Kuniaki Satoh

    INDUSTRIAL ROBOT-AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL   35 ( 3 )   206 - 210   2008

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    Purpose - The snail moves by propagating traveling waves from tail to head. If it is possible to propagate a traveling wave in many directions, an omni-directional mobile robot could be realized. The purpose of this paper is to develop an omni-directional mobile robot using the locomotion mechanism of the snail and to study the basic properties of the robot.
    Design/methodology/approach - A unit for mobile robot was developed to generate the traveling wave based on the snail. The omni-directional mobile robot is composed of eight units arranged in a circular shape and each abutting unit is connected by a spring. The robot generates a traveling wave by elongation and contraction of the units and realizes an omni-directional locomotion.
    Findings - It was confirmed that the robot moves using the traveling wave locomotion. Furthermore, the locomotion experiment confirmed that the robot moved in the expected direction with reasonable accuracy.
    Originality/value - This paper proposes a new omni-directional mobile mechanism using traveling wave based on a snail locomotion. Since the locomotion mechanism of the snail involves moving a larger area than is the case with other creatures, it is able to move not only on irregular ground such as swamps, but also on walls and ceilings. Hence, it is thought that this robot could be applied to the inspection of walls.

    DOI: 10.1108/01439910810868516

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  • Locomotion and Turning Patterns of a Peristaltic Crawling Earthworm Robot Composed of Flexible Units Reviewed

    Hayato Omori, Takeshi Hayakawa, Taro Nakamura

    2008 IEEE/RSJ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTS AND INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS, VOLS 1-3, CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS   1630 - 1635   2008

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    An earthworm moves by peristaltic crawling, which propagates extension and contraction waves along the anteroposterior direction from the anterior to posterior part, by varying the thickness and length of its segments. This locomotion mechanism is in contact with a large area on the ground when the robot moves. Furthermore, the amount of space required is less than that for other locomotion mechanisms. Therefore, this mechanism is suitable for not only rescue robots but also exploration robots in the ground and automatic endoscopic robots.
    In this study, we developed a peristaltic robot with a flexible feature actuated by servomotors. We proposed different turning patterns. In addition, we confirmed that the robot could move not only on a plane surface but also in a tube. The experiments revealed good performance.

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  • Locomotion strategy for a peristaltic crawling robot in a 2-dimensional space Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Tomohide Iwanaga

    2008 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND AUTOMATION, VOLS 1-9   238 - 243   2008

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    An earthworm moves by peristaltic crawling, which propagates a longitudinal wave from the front of the body to the back by varying the thickness and length of its segments. This locomotion mechanism can move while keeping a large area in contact with the ground. Further, the amount of space required by this locomotion mechanism is less than that by other locomotion mechanisms. Therefore, it is desirable to apply this mechanism not only to robots for rescue and limited environment exploration operations but also to locomotive endoscopic robots for medical engineering.
    In this study, we developed a peristaltic crawling robot that can move not only in a tube but also on a plane surface Furthermore; we propose a peristaltic crawling robot and its locomotion strategy. As a result, the simulation and experimental results showed good performance.

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  • Development of an amphibious hexapod robot based on a water strider Reviewed

    Soh Fujii, Taro Nakamura

    <I>Proceedings of 10th International Conference on Climbing and Walking Robots and the Support Technologies for Mobile Machines</I>(CLAWAR2007)   135 - 143   2007.7

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  • Mathematical model of pneumatic artificial muscle reinforced by straight fibers Reviewed

    Norihiko Saga, Taro Nakamura, Kenji Yaegashii

    JOURNAL OF INTELLIGENT MATERIAL SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES   18 ( 2 )   175 - 180   2007.2

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    This article describes a mathematical model of a pneumatic artificial muscle reinforced by straight fibers. The pneumatic artificial muscle is lightweight and high power. In addition, it is possible for it to emit exhaust into the atmosphere because the transmission medium of its energy is air, and it needs neither a tank nor maintenance like hydraulic equipment. In addition, safety to a person and the environment is high because the base of the actuator is a soft polymeric material even if damage to the artificial muscle is caused. On the other hand, because the device is composed of a thin film cylinder, and is easily influenced by outside power for the conversion of the volume change in rubber into physical contraction axially, and its passive character is strong, precise positional control is difficult. However, the living thing that has a verbose degree of freedom enables minute motion and walking, etc. by skillfully adjusting to avoid impedance, because it understands its own muscular characteristic beforehand. Similarly, it is thought that the precise positional control is possible by understanding the characteristics of an artificial muscle beforehand. In this research, it is assumed that the expansion shape of the pneumatic artificial muscle that we developed from the pressure distribution is equivalent to the centenary curve, and its model is based on dynamic balance. The result shows the effectiveness of control of an artificial muscle that uses highly accurate calculations and models.

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  • Earth-worm typed drilling robot for subsurface planetary exploration Reviewed

    Takashi Kubota, Kenji Nagaoka, Satoru Tanaka, Taro Nakamura

    2007 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ROBOTICS AND BIOMIMETICS, VOLS 1-5   1394 - +   2007

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    This paper presents a mobile robotic system designed to perform deep soil sampling for lunar or planetary subsurface exploration in the near future. Drilling robots have to carry the excavated fine sand, regolith backward because of the high density. Therefore a new scheme is proposed, to move forward under the soil by making use of reactive force caused by pushing the discharged regolith. The first simple experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.

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  • Position and force control based on mathematical models of pneumatic artificial muscles reinforced by straight glass fibers Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Hitomi Shinohara

    Proceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation   4361 - 4366   2007

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    This paper reports on the position and force control of pneumatic artificial muscles reinforced by straight glass fibers. This type of artificial muscle has a greater contraction ratio and power and a longer lifetime than conventional McKibben types. However, these muscles are highly non-linear
    hence, it is difficult to use them in a mechanical system. Furthermore, this actuator has a high compliance characteristic. Though this characteristic is useful for human interactions, the position and force of this actuator cannot be easily controlled. In this paper, a mathematical model of this type of artificial muscle is proposed, and the relationship between design parameters and control specifications is realized. In addition, the position and force based on the mathematical model are determined and applied to artificial muscle linearization. © 2007 IEEE.

    DOI: 10.1109/ROBOT.2007.364151

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  • Development of a soft manipulator with flexible joints using smart fluid and pneumatics cushion for collision with human Reviewed

    Yuki Akamatsu, Taro Nakamura, Yuta Kusaka

    2007 IEEE/ASME INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS, VOLS 1-3   488 - 493   2007

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    Recently, as robots and humans have increasingly come to share common spaces, especially in the fields of the medical and home automation, it has become necessary to consider the frequent physical collision of robots and humans. However, many robot joints employ actuators with high-ratio gear trains. Therefore, when this type robot comes into human contact it may cause pain. This study describes the development of a manipulator using a smart flexible joint employing ER fluid and a pneumatic cushion having a sensor function. As well, position control and collision experiments were performed regarding the developed manipulator. The experimental results demonstrate the manipulator's effectiveness.

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  • DEVELOPMENT OF AN OMNI-DIRECTIONAL MOBILE ROBOT BASED ON SNAIL LOCOMOTION Reviewed

    Kuniaki Satoh, Taro Nakamura

    ADVANCES IN CLIMBING AND WALKING ROBOTS, PROCEEDINGS   144 - 152   2007

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    In recent years in the field of bio-mechatronics, a robot that imitates a creature&apos;s motion has been developed, In this study, we present a locomotion robot based on locomotion of snail. The snail moves by propagating traveling waves from tail to head. If it is possible to propagate a traveling wave in many directions, an omni-directional mobile robot could be realized. Since the locomotion mechanism of the snail involves moving a larger area than in the case with other creatures, it is able to move not only on irregular ground such as swamps, but also on walls and ceilings. We have developed an omni-directional mobile robot that makes use of a traveling wave and have confirmed that the robot can move in many directions using a traveling wave.

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  • Experimental comparisons between McKibben Type artificial muscles and Straight fibers type artificial muscles Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura

    Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering   6414   2007

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    This paper describes experimental comparison between a conventional McKibben type artificial muscle and a straight fibers type artificial muscle developed by the authors. A wearable device and a rehabilitation robot which assists a human muscle should have characteristics similar to those of human muscle. In addition, because the wearable device and a rehabilitation robot should be light, an actuator with a high power/weight ratio is needed. At present, the McKibben type is widely used as an artificial muscle, but in fact its physical model is highly nonlinear. Further, the heat and mechanical loss of this actuator are large because of the friction caused by the expansion and contraction of the sleeve. Therefore, the authors have developed an artificial muscle tube in which high strength glass fibers have been built into the tube made from natural latex rubber. As results, experimental results demonstrated that the developed artificial muscle is more effective regarding its fundamental characteristics than that of the McKibben type
    the straight fibers types of artificial muscle have more contraction ratio and power, longer lifetime than the McKibben types. And it has almost same characteristics of human muscle for isotonic and isometric that evaluate it dynamically.

    DOI: 10.1117/12.698845

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  • Derivation of a mathematical model for artificial muscles Reviewed

    Hitomi Shinohara, Taro Nakamura

    <I>Proceedings of 4th IFAC Symposium on Mechatronic system</I>(Mechatronics2006)   266 - 270   2006.9

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  • Development of pneumatic cushion with an impact sensor Reviewed

    Yosuke EGUCHI, Taro NAKAMURA

    <I>Proceedings of 4th IFAC Symposium on Mechatronic systems</I>(Mechatronics2006)   1002 - 1005   2006.9

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  • Peristaltic Crawling Robot Based on the Locomotion Mechanism of Earthworms Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Takashi Kato, Tomohide Iwanaga, Yoichi Muranaka

    <I>Proceedings of 4th IFAC Symposium on Mechatronic systems</I>(Mechatronics2006)   139 - 144   2006.9

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Crawling Robot Based on Earthworm Locomotion Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Takashi Kato, Tomohide Iwanaga, Yoichi Muranaka

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   18 ( 3 )   299 - 304   2006.5

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    DOI: 10.20965/jrm.2006.p0299

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  • Development of a Peristaltic Crawling Robot Using Servo Motors Based on the Locomotion Mechanism of Earthworms Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Takashi Kato, Tomohide Iwanaga, Yoichi Muranaka

    <I>Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation</I>(ICRA2006)   4342   4342 - 4344   2006.4

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  • Development of Peristaltic Crawling Robot Using Artificial Muscle Actuator Reviewed

    SAGA Norihiko, UEDA Shinya, NAKAMURA Taro

    Transactions of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers   41 ( 12 )   1013 - 1018   2005.12

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    At present, there are various kinds of locomotion mechanisms of robots such as bipedal locomotion, locomotion on wheels, and meandering. All of these mechanisms need a lot of space. But the locomotion mechanism which needs only a slight amount of space is the peristaltic crawling of earthworms. Moreover, this is more stable than any other locomotion mechanisms. Therefore, we pay attention to the peristaltic crawling of earthworms, which will replace the mechanisms of locomotion on wheels or on foot, aiming to develop an earthworm type robot mobile on unleveled ground, narrow roads, in a heap of rubble, or inside the tubes of nuclear power plants. This paper reports on the characters of pneumatic artificial muscle actuator suggested by us, the design of an experimental peristaltic crawling type robot using the actuators, and their evaluation results.

    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr1965.41.1013

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  • Development of a Manipulator with Flexible Joints Using Smart Fluid:Reduction of Contact Forces on a Human Body and Vibration Control Reviewed

    NAKAMURA Taro, SAGA Norihiko, NAKAZAWA Masaru, KAWAMURA Takashi

    Transactions of the Society of Instrument and Control Engineers   40 ( 10 )   1060 - 1066   2004.10

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    Recently, as robots and humans have increasingly come to share common spaces especially in the fields of the medicine and home automation, it has become necessary to consider the frequent physical contact of robots and humans. However, many robot joints have actuators with high-ratio gear trains. Therefore, when this type robot comes in to human contact, such a robot may cause pain.<br>This study describes the development of a manipulator using a smart flexible joint composed of an ER fluid. Further, a torque controller designed in light of human pain tolerance is applied to the soft manipulator. Simulation and experimental results demonstrate the effectiveness of the manipulator.

    DOI: 10.9746/sicetr1965.40.1060

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  • Viscous Coefficient Control of Homogeneous ER Fluid Using a Sliding Mode Control Method Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Norihiko Saga, Masaru Nakazawa

    IEEJ Transactions on Industry Applications   124 ( 2 )   247 - 254   2004.9

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    Homogeneous ER fluid is one of the smart fluids, having properties by which their apparent viscosity coefficient can be controlled according to the strength of an electric field applied to them. However, the ER effect of the fluid is easily changed by shear rate variation or temperature variation. © 2004, The Institute of Electrical Engineers of Japan. All rights reserved.

    DOI: 10.1541/ieejias.124.247

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  • Development of a peristaltic crawling robot using magnetic fluid on the basis of the locomotion mechanism of the earthworm Reviewed

    Norihiko Saga, Taro Nakamura

    Smart Materials and Structures   13 ( 3 )   566 - 569   2004.6

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    In the field of bio-engineering the aim of developing new machines which utilize the motion and control of organisms as a model is attracting attention. This technology is pursued by paying attention to various shapes and movements of organisms and autonomous system of organisms that act in response to the environment surrounding them, and by mechanically elucidating the locomotion mechanism, propulsive mechanism, nerve system and sensation system for these organisms. On the other hand, in the field of hydrodynamics, magnetic fluid that changes its apparent viscosity depending on the magnetic field has been developed, and its utilization is under trial in various fields. Attention has been paid to the peristaltic crawling of the earthworm as a transport function in place of wheels or ambulation, and based on these observations a micro-robot running inside a tube using magnetic fluid has been developed. In this micro-robot, individual cells corresponding to the earthworm's segment are composed of a natural rubber tube sealed with water-based magnetic fluid, and several cells are connected with elastic rods made of natural rubber. The feature of this micro-robot is that its structure is simply composed, and it can be controlled with external wireless force, by providing it with moving magnetism from the outside. This paper presents the analytical result on the peristaltic crawling of an actual earthworm and the evaluation result for the transport mechanism of a prototype micro-robot moved by an external magnetic field.

    DOI: 10.1088/0964-1726/13/3/016

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  • A Prototype of Peristaltic Robot Using Pneumatic Artificial Muscle Reviewed

    Norihiko Saga, Taro Nakamura

    <I>Intelligent autonomous system</I>   8 ( 1 )   85 - 95   2004.3

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  • Variable viscous control of a homogeneous ER fluid device considering its dynamic characteristics Reviewed

    T Nakamura, N Saga, M Nakazawa

    MECHATRONICS   14 ( 1 )   55 - 68   2004.2

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    Homogeneous electro-rheological (ER) fluid is one of the intelligent fluids, having properties by which their apparent viscosity coefficient can be controlled according to the strength of an electric field applied to them. However, the ER effect of the fluid is easily changed by shear rate variation or temperature variation. Therefore, it is desirable for this fluid to be compensated by a feedback controller considering its dynamic characteristic.
    In this study, a continuous and accurate viscous control method is proposed, in order to enable a more effective use of the ER fluid, and demonstrate the application of the control method to a developed homogeneous ER clutch using a personal computer.
    The results of our experiment clearly show that the viscous coefficient of the clutch has been accurately and speedily controlled to the desirable viscous coefficient by the proposed control method. Therefore, by applying the proposed control method, it is possible to obtain a reliable ER device without being influenced by variations of this fluid property. (C) 2002 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0957-4158(02)00095-8

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  • Study on Electro-Magnetic Noise of Brushless Alternator for Hybrid Electric Vehicle Reviewed

    Norihiko Saga, Junya Nagase, Taro Nakamura

    <I>The 2<SUP>nd</SUP> International Conference on Mechatronics and Information Technology</I>(ICMIT2003)   565 - 569   2003.12

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  • Thermal effects of a homogeneous ER fluid device Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Norihiko Saga, Masaru Nakazawa

    Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures   14 ( 2 )   87 - 91   2003.2

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    The viscous coefficient of a homogeneous ER fluid can be changed by the application of an electric field. However, the ER effect of the fluid is easily varied by temperature variation. Therefore, an envelopment and time in which the fluid is applied is limited. In this paper, we examine the influence of the thermal effects induced on the fluid by the device, in order to construct more reliable homogeneous ER devices. We discuss two kinds of thermal effects caused by joule heat and the dissipation of viscous energy. The results of simulations and experiments suggest that most of the exothermic elements of the homogeneous ER fluid are caused by the dissipation of viscosity energy in the fluid. Therefore, it seems reasonable to drive the clutch at a low rotating speed for short periods. We think that a robot arm for impedance control is more effective than a damper for vibration control.

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  • Development of a pneumatic artificial muscle based on biomechanical characteristics

    T Nakamura, N Saga, K Yaegashi

    2003 IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INDUSTRIAL TECHNOLOGY, VOLS 1 AND 2, PROCEEDINGS   729 - 734   2003

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    This paper reports the development of a pneumatic artificial muscle based on biomechanical characteristics. A wearable device and a rehabilitation robot which assists a human muscle should have characteristics similar to those of human muscle. In addition, because the wearable device and the rehabilitation robot should be light, an actuator with a high power/weight ratio is needed. At present, the McKibben type is widely used as an artificial muscle, but in fact its physical model is highly nonlinear. Further, the heat and mechanical loss of this actuator are large because of the friction caused by the expansion and contraction of the sleeve. Therefore, the authors have developed an artificial muscle tube in which high strength Kevlar fiber has been built into the silicone tube. However, its contraction rate is smaller than actual biological muscles. In this study, an artificial muscle with a high contraction rate was developed by using natural latex rubber as the tube material. Since the elasticity of this material is smaller than that of silicone, characteristics similar to those of an actual muscle can be expected. Experimental results demonstrate the effectiveness of this artificial muscle regarding its fundamental and biomechanical characteristics.

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  • Study on peristaltic crawling robot using artificial muscle actuator Reviewed

    N Saga, T Nakamura, S Ueda

    PROCEEDINGS OF THE 2003 IEEE/ASME INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM 2003), VOLS 1 AND 2   679 - 684   2003

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    The field of bio-engineering with the aim of developing new machines, which utilizes the motion and control of organisms as a model, is attracting attention. This technology is pursued by focusing on to various shapes and movements of organisms and autonomous systems of organisms acting in response to the environment surrounding them, and by mechanically elucidating the locomotion mechanism, propulsive mechanism, nerve system and sensation system of these organisms.
    We examined the Peristaltic crawling of an earthworm as a transport function in place of wheels or ambulation, and have developed a robot running inside a tube. In this robot, a cell corresponding to the earthworm&apos;s segment is composed of a new artificial muscle actuator that we have developed.
    This paper presents the experimental result of the peristaltic crawling of an actual earthworm and the evaluation result of the transport mechanism of a prototype robot.

    DOI: 10.1109/aim.2003.1225176

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  • Development of a soft manipulator using a smart flexible joint for safe contact with humans Reviewed

    T Nakamura, N Saga, M Nakazawa, T Kawamura

    PROCEEDINGS OF THE 2003 IEEE/ASME INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED INTELLIGENT MECHATRONICS (AIM 2003), VOLS 1 AND 2   441 - 446   2003

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    Recently, as robots and humans increasingly share common spaces especially in the fields of the medicine and home automation, it has become necessary to consider the frequent physical contact of robots and humans However, many robot joints have actuators with high-ratio gear trains. Therefore when the robot comes in to human contact, the robot may cause pain.
    This study describes the development of a soft manipulator using a smart flexible joint composed of an ER fluid. Further, a torque controller designed in light of human pain tolerance is applied to the soft manipulator Experimental results demonstrate the effectiveness of the manipulator.

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  • Viscous Control of a Rotating Device Using Smart Fluid Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Norihiko Saga, Masaru Nakazawa, Takashi Kawamura

    <I>Proceedings of Seventh International Conference on Control, Automation, Robotics and Vision </I>(ICARCV2002)   447 - 452   2002.12

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  • Variable Damping Control of a Semi-Active Device Using Homogeneous ER Fluid

    NAKAMURA Taro, SAGA Norihiko, NAKAZAWA Masasu

    IEEJ Transactions on Industry Applications   122 ( 11 )   1045 - 1050   2002.11

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    The purpose of this study is to apply the variable damping impedance control to semi-active system using the homogeneous ER (Electro-rheorogical) fluid. A homogeneous ER fluid is constituted by liquid crystal or polymer liquid crystal, and it can change the apparent viscosity under a Newtonian fluid by applying the electric field. Then, when the fluid is applied for device of the machine system, the system can be used as a variable viscous damper. However, these systems have a lot of parameter variations or nonlinear elements. Therefore, some feedback compensations are necessary for these systems to keep up more precisely viscosity.&lt;br&gt;In this paper, we apply the force-based damping control to the homogeneous ER clutch in order to use the characteristics of the fluid enough. We apply the damping control based on the force control to keep up more precisely viscosity. The result of our experiment clearly has shown that the viscosity of the clutch is more certainly controlled by the force-based impedance control.

    DOI: 10.1541/ieejias.122.1045

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  • Impedance control of a single shaft-type clutch using homogeneous electrorheological fluid Reviewed

    T Nakamura, N Saga, M Nakazawa

    JOURNAL OF INTELLIGENT MATERIAL SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES   13 ( 7-8 )   465 - 469   2002.7

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    This study demonstrates the application of a precise and variable impedance control to the homogeneous electrotheological (ER) clutch. The viscous coefficient of a homogeneous ER fluid can be changed by the application of an electric field. However, the ER effect of the fluid is easily changed by shear rate variation or temperature variation. Therefore, some feedback compensations are necessary for these systems to maintain a more precise viscosity.
    In this paper, we apply a force-based impedance control to the homogeneous ER clutch in order to use ER fluid more effectively. First, we study the fundamental characteristics of the homogeneous ER clutch. Next, we apply the viscous control based on the force control in order to maintain a more precise viscosity. The results of our experiment clearly show that the viscosity of the clutch has been accurately and stably controlled by the proposed control method.

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  • Elucidation of propulsive force of microrobot using magnetic fluid Reviewed

    N Saga, T Nakamura

    JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSICS   91 ( 10 )   7003 - 7005   2002.5

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    Using the pattern of the peristaltic movement of an earthworm, a microrobot was developed for traveling in a tube using a magnetic fluid. In this microrobot, a cell equivalent to a segment of the earthworm is composed of a natural rubber tube into which a water-based magnetic fluid is sealed up. The cells are connected with rod-like elastic bodies of natural rubber. It was confirmed that this robot can travel in an acrylic tube (inner diameter: 12 mm, outer diameter: 14 mm) by providing a shifting magnetic field from the exterior. This article will describe how our microrobot is propelled, the mechanism of its propulsion, and the analytical results of the propulsive force. (C) 2002 American Institute of Physics.

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  • Development of peristaltic crawling robot using magnetic fluid on the basis of locomotion mechanism of earthworm Reviewed

    N Saga, T Nakamura

    SMART STRUCTURES, DEVICES, AND SYSTEMS   4935   369 - 377   2002

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    The field of bio-engineering with the aim of developing new machines, which utilizes the motion and control of organisms as a model, is attracting attention. This technology is pursued by paying attention to various shapes and movements of organisms and autonomous system of organisms in acting in response to environment surrounding them, and by mechanically elucidating the locomotion mechanism, propulsive mechanism, nerve system and sensation system of these organisms. On the other hand, in the field of hydrodynamics, magnetic fluid that changes its apparent viscosity depending on magnetic field has been developed, and its utilization is under trial in various fields. We paid attention to the peristaltic crawling of earthworm as transport function in place of wheels or ambulation, and have developed a micro robot running inside a tube using magnetic fluid. In this micro robot, a cell corresponding to earthworm's segment is composed of a natural rubber tube sealed with water-based magnetic fluid, and the cells are connected with elastic rods made of natural rubber.
    The feature of this micro robot is that its structure is simply composed of, and it can be controlled with external wireless force, by providing it with moving magnetism from the outside. This paper presents the analytical result of the peristaltic crawling of an actual earthworm and the evaluation result-of transport mechanism of a prototype micro robot moved by external magnetic field.

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  • Position Control of an Oil Hydraulic System

    Taro Nakamura, Norihiko Saga, Yoshio Takahashi

    <I>Proceedings of the first International Science Forum</I>   331 - 334   2001.10

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  • Development and Fundamental Characteristic of One-Shaft Type ER Clutch

    Norihiko Saga, Taro Nakamura, Masaru Nakazawa

    IEEJ Transactions on Industry Applications   121 ( 10 )   1055 - 1060   2001.9

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    Electro-rheological (ER) fluid is a member of the family of intelligent fluids, and it has the character that the apparent viscosity can be controlled according to strength of an applied electric field. Various applications using ER fluid have been developed. Recently, the research on whether ER fluid can be applied to the area of the motion controlof robotics has been performed. For example, we see that robots in factory applications have two links. For the sake of safety, it is necessary to create an enclosure around the robot, since it is not possible for humans to approach large-capacity robots. Thus, we considered that the robot armwould not injure a human if it was possible for the robot arm to bend softly when making human contact, with the force applied at the arm tip skillfully controlled at the joint. In orderto realize this motion, we will develop an actuator build into the joint, and we examined the control method (impedance control) of the robot arm. In this paper, we developed a one-shaft type ER clutch to be installed at the joint division of a robot arm. The developed ER clutch is stronger than the conventional ER clutch in terms of radial motion. Further, we examined the fundamental characteristics of the developed ER clutch in order to apply impedance control to it. The results of our experiment show that the coefficient of viscosity is directly proportional to the applied electrical field. Therefore, it is concluded that the clutch is able to be controlled by impedance control. © 2001, The Institute of Electrical Engineers of Japan. All rights reserved.

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  • Development and Evaluation of One Shaft type ER Clutch Reviewed

    Journal of Robotics and Mechatronics   13 ( 4 )   432 - 437   2001.8

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  • Impedance Control of a One Shaft Type Clutch Using Homogeneous Electrorheological Fluid Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Norihiko Saga, Masaru Nakazawa

    <I>Proceedings of Eighth International Conference on Electrorheological Fluids and Magnetorheological Suspensions </I>(ERMR2001)   153 - 259   2001.7

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  • Study on Temperature Characteristics of a Clutch Using Homogeneous ER Fluid

    Taro Nakamura, Norihiko Saga, Yoshio Takahashi, Masaru Nakazawa

    IEEJ Transactions on Industry Applications   121 ( 12 )   1243 - 1249   2001

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    Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:一般社団法人 電気学会  

    Recently, it is popular to study about ER fluid in a field of mechatronics and fluid mechanics. An ER fluid is one of the smart fluid, and it has the character that the apparent viscosity can be controlled according to strength of an applied electric field. We also have already developed of the one shaft type ER clutch using a homogeneous ER fluid that is one of the ER fluids. The homogeneous ER fluid has a character that the particle does not subside and the gap between electrodes can be narrowed due to be able to get the shearing stress in the same electric field. In addition, it also has a character that its viscosity is susceptible to the temperature variation. However, there are no reports about the temperature characteristics for the clutch using the homogeneous ER fluid. In this paper, we study about thermal characteristics of the clutch using the homogeneous ER fluid. First, we discuss about the torque performances of the homogeneous ER clutch for the increasing its temperature. Here, it was found that the output torque of the clutch depends on the temperature variation. Next, we also discuss about an exothermic element of the homogeneous ER fluid given by the clutch. The result of experiment and simulation clearly shows that the most of exothermic elements of the homogeneous ER fluid is caused by the dissipation of viscosity energy in the fluid. As a result, suitable using method for the homogeneous ER clutch seems reasonable to drive the clutch with low rotating speed for the short time. © 2001, The Institute of Electrical Engineers of Japan. All rights reserved.

    DOI: 10.1541/ieejias.121.1243

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  • Development and Experiment of ER Clutch for Robot Arms Reviewed

    Norihiko Saga, Taro Nakamura, Yoshio Takahashi

    <I>Proceedings of the fifth international conference on motion and vibration control </I>(MOVIC2000)   2   649 - 654   2000.12

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    Authorship:Corresponding author   Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (international conference proceedings)   Publisher:JSME  

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  • Performance Evaluation of Several Robust Controls Application to Electrical Oil Hydraulic System Reviewed

    Taro Nakamura, Yoshihiro Sasaki, Norihiro Saga, Yoshio Takahashi

    <I>Proceedings of Sixth Triennial International Symposium on Fluid Control, Measurement and Visualization </I>(FLUCOME2000)   110   1 - 6   2000.9

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    Authorship:Lead author, Corresponding author   Language:English   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:FULCOME  

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  • 電気油圧サーボ系のロバスト制御に関する研究(比例弁・油圧シリンダ系の位置制御) Reviewed

    佐々木芳弘, 中村太郎, 高橋義雄

    日本油圧学会論文集   31 ( 2 )   44 - 49   2000.3

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    Language:Japanese   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)   Publisher:日本油空圧学会  

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  • 電気油圧サーボ系のロバスト制御系設計

    中村 太郎, 佐々木 芳宏, 高橋 義雄

    油空圧講演論文集   10 ( 2 )   73 - 75   1998.11

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    Authorship:Lead author, Corresponding author   Language:Japanese   Publishing type:Research paper (scientific journal)  

    CiNii Books

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Books

  • ロボット工学ハンドブック 第3版

    日本ロボット学会(PP245-247)

    コロナ社  2023.3  ( ISBN:9784339046793

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    Total pages:ix, 1072p   Language:Japanese  

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  • Robotics for Sustainable Future CLAWAR 2021

    ( Role: Edit)

    2021.9 

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  • 生物の優れた機能から着想を得た新しいものづくり―バイオミメティクスからの発展―

    中村太郎, 山田泰之( Role: Joint author「ソフトアクチュエーションによる生物型ロボティクス・メカトロニクス」)

    シーエムシー出版  2018.11 

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    Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • 動物の特殊な機能を規範としたロボット

    中村太郎( Role: Joint author動物の特殊な機能を規範としたロボット)

    丸善出版  2018.9 

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    Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • オーグメンテッド・ヒューマン Augmented Human~AIと人体科学の融合による人機一体、究極のIFが創る未来~

    ( Role: Joint author)

    S&T出版  2018.1 

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  • 実用化に向けたソフトアクチュエータの開発と応用・制御技術

    中村 太郎, 戸森 央貴( Role: Joint author開発研究編第3章)

    シーエムシー出版  2017.3 

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    Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • ソフトアクチュエータの材料・構成・応用技術

    ( Role: Joint author8章)

    &T 出版  2016.11 

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    Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • 先生、物理っておもしろいんですか?

    パリティ編集委員会編( Role: Joint author担当:ロボットの動きをデザインする)

    丸善出版  2015.5 

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    Total pages:216   Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • パワーアシスト・ロボットに関する材料,電子機器,制御と実用化,その最新技術

    ( Role: Joint author担当:空気圧ゴム人口筋肉の開発とロボットシステムへの応用)

    技術情報協会  2015.4 

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    Total pages:590   Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • 生物模倣技術と新材料・新製品開発への応用

    ( Role: Joint author担当:ミミズの蠕動運動を規範としたロボット設計と様々な分野への応用)

    技術情報協会  2014.7 

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    Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • 筋機能改善の理学療法とそのメカニズム(第3版)

    望月久, 山田茂編著( Role: Joint author担当:第13章「人工筋肉の開発と拮抗関節への応用」)

    ナップ  2014.5 

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    Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • 図解 人工筋肉 ソフトアクチュエータが拓く世界

    ( Role: Sole author)

    日刊工業新聞社  2011.11 

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  • 日本機械学会教科書:ロボティクス

    中村太郎, 日本機械学会編, ロボティクスメカトロニクス部門出版委員会( Role: Joint author)

    一般公益法人 日本機械学会  2011.9 

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    Language:Japanese   Book type:Scholarly book

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  • ロボットテクノロジー

    中村太郎, 日本ロボット学会編( Role: Joint author)

    ホーム社  2011.8 

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MISC

  • ソフトロボット技術を用いた蠕ぜん動運動機構の事業化

    梅田清, 中村太郎

    日本フルードパワーシステム学会誌   Vol54 ( No.1 )   16 - 20   2023.1

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  • Development of Compact Soft-Actuator via Dimethyl Ether Combustion: Continuous Drive of DME Combustion Drive Arti