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Micromachines 2016, 7(1), 3; doi:10.3390/mi7010003
Article

Towards Independent Control of Multiple Magnetic Mobile Microrobots

,
 and
*
Multiscale Robotics and Automation Laboratory, School of Mechanical Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA
This paper is an extended version of our paper published in Proceedings of the 2015 ASME International Design Engineering Technical Conferences & Computers and Information in Engineering Conference, Boston, MA, USA, 2–5 August 2015.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Toshio Fukuda, Mohd Ridzuan bin Ahmad, Yajing Shen and Nam-Trung Nguyen
Received: 1 November 2015 / Revised: 17 December 2015 / Accepted: 22 December 2015 / Published: 29 December 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Micro/Nano Robotics)
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Abstract

In this paper, we have developed an approach for independent autonomous navigation of multiple microrobots under the influence of magnetic fields and validated it experimentally. We first developed a heuristics based planning algorithm for generating collision-free trajectories for the microrobots that are suitable to be executed by an available magnetic field. Second, we have modeled the dynamics of the microrobots to develop a controller for determining the forces that need to be generated for the navigation of the robots along the trajectories at a suitable control frequency. Next, an optimization routine is developed to determine the input currents to the electromagnetic coils that can generate the required forces for the navigation of the robots at the controller frequency. We then validated our approach by simulating an electromagnetic system that contains an array of sixty-four magnetic microcoils designed for generating local magnetic fields suitable for simultaneous independent actuation of multiple microrobots. Finally, we prototyped an m m -scale version of the system and present experimental results showing the validity of our approach.
Keywords: magnetic microrobots; path planning; mobile microrobots magnetic microrobots; path planning; mobile microrobots
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Chowdhury, S.; Jing, W.; Cappelleri, D.J. Towards Independent Control of Multiple Magnetic Mobile Microrobots. Micromachines 2016, 7, 3.

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