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Open AccessArticle

A Static Balancing Method for Variable Payloads by Combination of a Counterweight and Spring and Its Application as a Surgical Platform

1
Department of Intelligent Robot Engineering, Hanyang University, 222, Wangsimni-ro, Seongdong-gu, Seoul 04763, Korea
2
Department of Industry-University Cooperation Foundation, Hanyang University ERICA, 55 Hanyangdaehak-ro, Sangnok-gu, Ansan, Gyeonggi-do 15588, Korea
3
Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Hanyang University, 55 Hanyangdaehak-ro, Sangnok-gu, Ansan, Gyeonggi-do 15588, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(19), 3955; https://doi.org/10.3390/app9193955
Received: 13 August 2019 / Revised: 11 September 2019 / Accepted: 16 September 2019 / Published: 20 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Next-Generation Surgical Robotics)
Stackable mechanism architecture has demonstrated effective gravity-balancing over entire workspaces. Adjustable balancing is required when balancing is broken due to changing the payload at the distal end of a mechanism. In this paper, adjustable balancing of the stackable mechanism for a variable payload is investigated. For this, balancing conditions for three adjustable balancing methods are suggested, and a new balancing method combining a spring and counterweight is considered as an effective means of adjustable balancing for variable payloads. The excellent performance of the system is proven through experiments. Electromyography (EMG) sensors are employed to measure the amount of energy expenditure during the drilling task. It was verified through several tests that an operator holding a drill mounted at the distal end of a stackable arm felt less energy compared to an operator holding the drill directly in free space. The developed balancing arm was successfully applied during a mastoidectomy. A 3-step warning algorithm along with a braking function was found to be effective for safe surgery. View Full-Text
Keywords: parallel robots; medical robots; ear surgery; balancing; mastoidectomy parallel robots; medical robots; ear surgery; balancing; mastoidectomy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Woo, J.; Seo, J.-T.; Yi, B.-J. A Static Balancing Method for Variable Payloads by Combination of a Counterweight and Spring and Its Application as a Surgical Platform. Appl. Sci. 2019, 9, 3955.

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