Reconfigurable Parts Feeding System Using Array of Vibrators
Yasuhiro Yamada, Nobutaka Torii, and Yoshiaki Komura
University of Fukui, 3-9-1, Bunkyo, Fukui, 910-8507 Japan
We propose a reconfigurable parts feeding system (RPFS) consisting of a large number of vibrators, each consisting of a vertical exciter having a piezoelectric element used as a drive source and a plate installed on the vertical exciter. The plate freely chooses a specific feed direction (forward and turn) by adjusting the thickness of the plate and the position of an elastic hinge. The RPSF features: (1) a variety of feed paths freely formed by adjusting plates on vertical exciters, and (2) positional adjustment for plates on vertical exciters automated using a robot to reduce time and cost. We analyzed the vibration of plates based on vibration modes of plates based on FEM analysis. Basic RPFS performance was evaluated in 3 feeding experiments, i.e., along an I-shaped feed path, along a U-shaped feed path, and with a feeding object larger than each plate, using an experimental RPFS.
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