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Fault Tolerance for Kinematically Redundant Manipulators: Anticipating Free-Swinging Joint Failures

By James D. English and Anthony A. Maciejewski


Fault tolerance is an important design criterion for robotic systems operating in hazardous or remote environments. This article addresses the issue of tolerating a free-swinging joint failure by focusing on how to best configure a slow-moving manipulator before a failure. Three scalar measures of fault susceptibility are defined using joint torques/forces, acceleration, and swing angles. Minimizing these measures is an approach to achieving fault tolerance, and for this, algorithms to calculate their gradients are given. The formulas are valid for general n-link manipulators. I. Introduction Robots that operate in remote or hazardous environments must be used in a manner that reflects the implications of failure scenarios on system performance [1, 2, 3]. Kinematically redundant robots have been proposed for use in such environments due to their dexterity before a failure and ability to continue operation after a failure [4, 5, 6]. A crucial component of any system designed to tolera..

Year: 1996
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