Next Article in Journal
Actuators for Active Magnetic Bearings
Previous Article in Journal
Quantification of Force and Torque Applied by a High-Field Magnetic Resonance Imaging System on an Ultrasonic Motor for MRI-Guided Robot-Assisted Interventions
Previous Article in Special Issue
Stiffness Control of Variable Serial Elastic Actuators: Energy Efficiency through Exploitation of Natural Dynamics
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Actuators 2017, 6(4), 30; doi:10.3390/act6040030

Electric-Pneumatic Actuator: A New Muscle for Locomotion

1
Lauflabor Locomotion Laboratory, Institute of Sport Science, Centre for Cognitive Science, TU Darmstadt, 64289 Darmstadt, Germany
2
ECE Department, School of Engineering, University of Tehran, Tehran 1439957131, Iran
3
Graduate School of Engineering Science, Osaka University, 1-3 Machikaneyama-cho, Toyonaka, Osaka 560-8531, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 19 June 2017 / Revised: 8 September 2017 / Accepted: 16 October 2017 / Published: 25 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Variable Stiffness and Variable Impedance Actuators)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [5315 KB, uploaded 25 October 2017]   |  

Abstract

A better understanding of how actuator design supports locomotor function may help develop novel and more functional powered assistive devices or robotic legged systems. Legged robots comprise passive parts (e.g., segments, joints and connections) which are moved in a coordinated manner by actuators. In this study, we propose a novel concept of a hybrid electric-pneumatic actuator (EPA) as an enhanced variable impedance actuator (VIA). EPA is consisted of a pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM) and an electric motor (EM). In contrast to other VIAs, the pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM) within the EPA provides not only adaptable compliance, but also an additional powerful actuator with muscle-like properties, which can be arranged in different combinations (e.g., in series or parallel) to the EM. The novel hybrid actuator shares the advantages of both integrated actuator types combining precise control of EM with compliant energy storage of PAM, which are required for efficient and adjustable locomotion. Experimental and simulation results based on the new dynamic model of PAM support the hypothesis that combination of the two actuators can improve efficiency (energy and peak power) and performance, while does not increase control complexity and weight, considerably. Finally, the experiments on EPA adapted bipedal robot (knee joint of the BioBiped3 robot) show improved efficiency of the actuator at different frequencies. View Full-Text
Keywords: hybrid actuator; variable impedance actuator (VIA); pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM); electric motors; legged locomotion hybrid actuator; variable impedance actuator (VIA); pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM); electric motors; legged locomotion
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Ahmad Sharbafi, M.; Shin, H.; Zhao, G.; Hosoda, K.; Seyfarth, A. Electric-Pneumatic Actuator: A New Muscle for Locomotion. Actuators 2017, 6, 30.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Actuators EISSN 2076-0825 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top