Report Number: CS-TR-94-1532
Institution: Stanford University, Department of Computer Science
Title: Planning the Collision-Free Paths of an Actively Flexible Manipulator
Author: Banon, Jose
Date: December 1994
Abstract: Most robot manipulators consist of a small sequence of rigid links connected by articulated joints. However, robot dexterity is considerably enhanced when the number of joints is large or infinite. Additional joints make it possible to manipulate objects in cluttered environments where non-redundant robots are useless. In this paper we consider a simulated actively flexible manipulator (AFM), i.e. a manipulator whose flexibility can be directly controlled by its actuators. We propose an efficient method for planning the collision-free paths of an AFM in a three-dimensional workspace. We implemented this method on a graphic workstation and experimented with it on several examples.