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ROBOCRANE®

The RoboCrane design utilizes the basic idea of the Stewart Platform parallel link manipulator. The unique feature of the NIST approach is the use of cables as the parallel links and the use of winches as the actuators.

 

Description:

The Intelligent Systems Division of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) experimented with a variety of applications for the NIST RoboCrane. The RoboCrane design utilizes the basic idea of the Stewart Platform parallel link manipulator. The unique feature of the NIST approach is the use of cables as the parallel links and the use of winches as the actuators. Depending on what is suspended from its work platform, the RoboCrane has land, air, water, and space applications. A 2-meter version, 6-meter version, ship-hull access version (Flying Carpet) and other versions of the RoboCrane have been built and critical performance characteristics analyzed. Through these and other conceptual models, example applications for RoboCrane are: flexible-structure mobility, heavy material handling, and flexible fixturing on land; rescue and personnel/equipment maneuverability in air; subsea pipe-laying/removal, lifting, and salvage from stable or unstable references on water; drydock ship-hull access, and lightweight, long distance lunar rover capabilities in space. All applications of RoboCrane include a large work volume, six degree-of-freedom control, precision maneuverability, and enhanced crane capabilities. Many partners collaborated on this project over approximately 15 years.

 

Applications Concepts Explored

Dual Manipulators

Flexible Fixturing

Gantries

Grinding

Gripping/Barrel Grabbing

Inspection

Material Handling

Pipe/Beam Fitting

Sawing

Welding

Miscellaneous

Robot Calibrator

8-Cable RoboCrane

Stone Carving

Air Craft Maintenance

Air Transportable Expeditionary Crane (ATEC)

Bridge Construction

Lunar Rover

Machining

Off-Shore Cargo Handling

Ship Building

Undersea Configurations

Waste Clean-up 

Oil-Well Fire Fighting





 

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More Information about RoboCrane:

Robocrane Cover Image
Large Scale Manufacturing using Cable Control
Contact

For more information about RoboCrane, please contact the project manager, Roger Bostelman