Series Elastic Actuation decouples actuator inertia from the interaction ports and is thus advantageous for force-controlled devices. Parallel or even passive compliance can fulfill a complementary role by compensating for gravitational or periodic inertial forces or by providing passive guidance. Here, these concepts are combined in an underactuated six degree of freedom (6-DoF) compliant manipulator with one actuated DoF. The mechanism comprises a spring assembly in which each spring serves as an actuation element and simultaneously provides passive compliance in the unactuated DoF. The device is designed to assist weight shifting via controlled lateral forces on a human pelvis during treadmill walking and its eigenfrequencies are tuned to align with normal gait. 6-DoF force and torque sensing are realized via a model of the spring deformation characteristics in combination with low-cost inertial and optical sensors. Experimental evaluation demonstrates that the system can effectively follow physiological lateral pelvis movement with low interaction forces and also has little impact on remaining pelvis motions.
- series elastic actuator (SEA)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Control and Systems Engineering
- Computer Science Applications
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering