Description: A challenging problem presently being addressed by the Department of Energy (DOE) is the extraction of large volumes of hazardous waste from underground waste storage facilities. The nature of the material requires the use of robotic and teleoperated systems. Furthermore, the constraints of the storage tanks require the use of long reach manipulators. These robots are characterized by their large workspace and reduced mass. Unfortunately, this reduction in mass increases structural compliance, making these robots susceptible to vibration. Until recently, no attempt has been made to provide the operator any type of force reflection due to the compliance of the slave robot. This paper addresses the control of bilateral teleoperation systems that use long-reach, flexible manipulators. Analysis and experiments show that the compliance of the slave robot directly affects the stability of the teleoperation system. This study suggests that this may be controlled by increasing the damping on the master robot. However, this increase in target damping increases the energy an operator must exert during the execution of a task. A new teleoperation strategy adapts the target impedance of the master robot to variations in the identified impedance of the remote environment coupled to the slave robot. Experiments show increased performance due to a decrease in the energy the operator must provide during task execution.
Date: February 1, 1997
Creator: Love, L.J.
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