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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Keywords: Robotics, Patents
Applicant: iRobot Corporation, USAPatent number: US6,668,951Publication date: 30 December 2003Title: Robotic Platform
A robotically controlled mobility platform is described. In one embodiment the invention is an articulated tracked vehicle, comprising a main section, which includes a main frame and a forward section. The main section is contained within the volume defined by the main tracks and is symmetrical about a horizontal plane, thereby allowing inverted operation of the robot. The main frame has two sides and a front end, and includes a pair of parallel main tracks. Each main track includes a flexible continuous belt coupled to a corresponding side of the main frame. The forward section includes an elongated arm, whereby one end of the arm is pivotally coupled to the main frame near the forward end of the main frame about a transverse axis that is generally perpendicular to the sides of the main frame. The arm has a length sufficiently long to allow the forward section to extend below the main section in at least some degrees of rotation of the arm, and a length shorter than the length of the main section. The centre of mass of the main section is located forward of the rearmost point reached by the end of the arm in its pivoting about the transverse axis.