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Research on a mobile manipulator for biochemical sampling tasks

Weidong Wang (Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China)
Wenrui Gao (State Key Laboratory of Robotics and System, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China)
DongMei Wu (Department of Mechatronics Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China)
Zhijiang Du (Department of Mechatronics Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, China)

Industrial Robot

ISSN: 0143-991x

Article publication date: 19 June 2017

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to present a tracked robot comprised of several biochemical sampling instruments and a universal control architecture. In addition, a dynamic motion planning strategy and autonomous modules in sampling tasks are designed and illustrated at length.

Design/methodology/approach

Several sampling instruments with position tolerance and sealing property are specifically developed, and a robotic operation system (ROS)-based universal control architecture is established. Then, based on the system, two typical problems in sampling tasks, i.e. arm motion planning in unknown environment and autonomous modules, are discussed, implemented and tested. Inspired by the idea of Gaussian process classification (GPC) and Gaussian process (GP) information entropy, three-dimensional (3D) geometric modeling and arm obstacle avoidance strategy are implemented and proven successfully. Moreover, autonomous modules during sampling process are discussed and realized.

Findings

Smooth implementations of the two experiments justify the validity and extensibility of the robot control scheme. Furthermore, the former experiment proves the efficiency of arm obstacle avoidance strategy, while the later one demonstrates the time reduction and accuracy improvement in sampling tasks as the autonomous actions.

Practical implications

The proposed control architecture can be applied to more mobile and industrial robots for its feasible and extensible scheme, and the utility function in arm path planning strategy can also be utilized for other information-driven exploration tasks.

Originality/value

Several specific biochemical sampling instruments are presented in detail, while ROS and Moveit! are integrated into the system scheme, making the robot extensible, achievable and real-time. Based on the control scheme, an information-driven path planning algorithm and automation in sampling tasks are conceived and implemented.

Keywords

Citation

Wang, W., Gao, W., Wu, D. and Du, Z. (2017), "Research on a mobile manipulator for biochemical sampling tasks", Industrial Robot, Vol. 44 No. 4, pp. 467-478. https://doi.org/10.1108/IR-11-2016-0305

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited