Development of Ladder Climbing Robot LCR-1
H. lida, H. Hozumi and R. Nakayama
Toshiba Nuclear Engineering Laboratory, 4-1 Ukishimacho, Kawasaki-ku, Kawasaki 210, Japan
A new mobile robot has been developed, which is capable of ascending and descending vertical ladders such as those used in nuclear power plants and other facilities. The Ladder Climbing Robot releases personnel from dangerous and laborious work at high elevations. The body of the robot has four grippers which grip each rung of the ladder as it ascends or descends. Each gripper is able to move up, down, forward or backward, and has two kinds of sensors to detect a rung: one photoelectric-switch and one limit-switch. The robot can operate automatically or be remote controlled. Three of the grippers are continuously in contact with the ladder rungs to prevent falling. As a result of experiment, it has been confirmed that in trials the prototype model LCR-1 with a built-in microcomputer can ascend and descend an actual vertical ladder automatically.