Wrapping Objects with an Automatic Contraction Ring
1-1-1 Noji-higashi, Kusatsu, Shiga 525-8577, Japan
The rubber band gripper is an automatic contraction ring that is used to wrap and fix objects of various shapes by vacuuming the inside of the ring. It can be used to handle objects as a robot gripper, as well as fix bodies to pedestals, and objects to bodies. This study geometrically analyzes object shapes that can be wrapped using the ring, without causing gaps in the gripping mechanism. The analysis and experimental results show that the object shapes that can be wrapped without gaps are determined by the maximum shrinkage rate after the ring contacts the object as well as the circumference of the object. The range of object shapes that can be wrapped without gaps narrows as the object position moves away from the center of the ring. However, this influence is small, except when the object is small or has a large aspect ratio. In particular, when the object shape is cylindrical, it can be wrapped without gaps regardless of its position within the ring.
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