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Technical Brief

A Novel Robotic Tree Climbing Mechanism With Anti-Falling Functionality for Tree Pruning

[+] Author and Article Information
Pengfei Gui

School of Engineering and Advanced Technology,
Massey University,
Palmerston North 4410, New Zealand
e-mail: P.F.Gui@massey.ac.nz

Liqiong Tang

School of Engineering and Advanced Technology,
Massey University,
Palmerston North 4410, New Zealand
e-mail: L.Tang@massey.ac.nz

Subhas Mukhopadhyay

Department of Engineering,
Macquarie University,
Sydney 2109, Australia
e-mail: subhas.mukhopadhyay@mq.edu.au

Manuscript received January 15, 2017; final manuscript received September 29, 2017; published online November 29, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Jun Ueda.

J. Mechanisms Robotics 10(1), 014502 (Nov 29, 2017) (8 pages) Paper No: JMR-17-1012; doi: 10.1115/1.4038219 History: Received January 15, 2017; Revised September 29, 2017

This paper presents a novel mechanism of tree climbing robotic system for tree pruning. The unique features of this system include the passive and active anti-falling mechanisms, which prevent the robot from falling to the ground under either static or dynamic situations, the capability to vertically or spirally climb up a tree trunk, and the flexibility to suit different trunk sizes. The computer-aided design (CAD) models of the robotic mechanism, static and kinematic analysis, climbing simulation, and testing of the physical model are stated in detail. This research work reveals that this novel tree climbing mechanism can be served as a platform for tree pruning robot.

Copyright © 2018 by ASME
Topics: Robots , Wheels , Design , Robotics
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Figures

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Fig. 1

Mechanical construction of the tree pruning robot design

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Fig. 2

Climbing robot leg module

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Fig. 3

Servomotor driving mechanism

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Fig. 4

Lateral view of climbing robot force and moment illustration

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Fig. 5

Top view of climbing robot force and moment illustration

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Fig. 6

Climbing robot wheel rolling resistance: hysteresis losses [22]

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Fig. 7

Force and torque analysis on one robot leg

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Fig. 8

Passive anti-falling mechanism: lateral view and top view

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Fig. 9

Four views of pruning robot in SimMechanics

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Fig. 10

Direct current motor driving torque

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Fig. 11

Robot vertical climbing velocity

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Fig. 12

Tree climbing robot leg

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Fig. 13

Tree climbing robot physical test model

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Fig. 14

The three DC motor climbing speed

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Fig. 15

Direct current motor current

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Fig. 16

Tree climbing robot climbing process

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