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Actuators 2014, 3(2), 142-161; doi:10.3390/act3020142

Robust and Accurate Closed-Loop Control of McKibben Artificial Muscle Contraction with a Linear Single Integral Action

1 Institut National de Sciences Appliquées, University of Toulouse, Campus de Rangueil, 31077 Toulouse, France 2 LAAS/CNRS, 7 avenue du Colonel Roche, 31400 Toulouse, France 
Received: 27 March 2014 / Revised: 26 May 2014 / Accepted: 28 May 2014 / Published: 17 June 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soft Actuators)
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We analyze the possibility of taking advantage of artificial muscle’s own stiffness and damping, and substituting it for a classic proportional-integral-derivative controller (PID) controller an I controller. The advantages are that there would only be one parameter to tune and no need for a dynamic model. A stability analysis is proposed from a simple phenomenological artificial muscle model. Step and sinus-wave tracking responses performed with pneumatic McKibben muscles are reported showing the practical efficiency of the method to combine accuracy and load robustness. In the particular case of the McKibben artificial muscle technology, we suggest that the dynamic performances in stability and load robustness would result from the textile nature of its braided sleeve and its internal friction which do not obey Coulomb’s third law, as verified by preliminary reported original friction experiments. Comparisons are reported between three kinds of braided sleeves made of rayon yarns, plastic, and thin metal wires, whose similar closed-loop dynamic performances are highlighted. It is also experimentally shown that a sleeve braided with thin metal wires can give high accuracy performance, in step as in tracking response. This would be due to a low static friction coefficient combined with a kinetic friction exponentially increasing with speed in accordance with hydrodynamic lubrication theory applied to textile physics.
Keywords: McKibben artificial muscle; closed-loop control of artificial muscle McKibben artificial muscle; closed-loop control of artificial muscle
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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Tondu, B. Robust and Accurate Closed-Loop Control of McKibben Artificial Muscle Contraction with a Linear Single Integral Action. Actuators 2014, 3, 142-161.

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