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  • Increased Longevity and Pumping Performance of an Injection Molded Soft Total Artificial Heart
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-09-23
    Leonard G. Guex; Lewis S. Jones; A. Xavier Kohll; Roland Walker; Mirko Meboldt; Volkmar Falk; M. Schmid Daners; Wendelin J. Stark

    In this work, we present an injection molded soft total artificial heart (sTAH) produced from high-temperature vulcanizing silicone using an industrial metal injection mold. At 60 beats per minute, the sTAH exhibited a total cardiac output of over 16 L/min against physiological pressures on a mock circulation and was pumped continuously for 110,000 actuation cycles. Finite element analysis was used

  • Texture Discrimination with a Soft Biomimetic Finger Using a Flexible Neuromorphic Tactile Sensor Array That Provides Sensory Feedback
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-09-23
    Sriramana Sankar; Darshini Balamurugan; Alisa Brown; Keqin Ding; Xingyuan Xu; Jin Huat Low; Chen Hua Yeow; Nitish Thakor

    The compliant nature of soft fingers allows for safe and dexterous manipulation of objects by humans in an unstructured environment. A soft prosthetic finger design with tactile sensing capabilities for texture discrimination and subsequent sensory stimulation has the potential to create a more natural experience for an amputee. In this work, a pneumatically actuated soft biomimetic finger is integrated

  • Soft Pneumatic Actuator with Bimodal Bending Response Using a Single Pressure Source.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-25
    David Rostin Ellis,Martin Philip Venter,Gerhard Venter

    Deformation behavior of soft pneumatic actuators (SPAs) can mechanically be preprogrammed into their architecture during design. To date, the majority of SPAs rely on a unimodal bending design. This paper develops a method of including a bimodal design into the deformed state by means of a bilinear material that replaces the conventional strain limiter. With a simple increase in pneumatic pressure

  • An Analysis of Peristaltic Locomotion for Maximizing Velocity or Minimizing Cost of Transport of Earthworm-Like Robots.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-25
    Akhil Kandhari,Yifan Wang,Hillel J Chiel,Roger D Quinn,Kathryn A Daltorio

    Earthworm-like peristaltic locomotion has been implemented in >50 robots, with many potential applications in otherwise inaccessible terrain. Design guidelines for peristaltic locomotion have come from observations of biology, but robots have empirically explored different structures, actuators, and control waveform shapes than those observed in biological organisms. In this study, we suggest a template

  • Design and Fabrication of a Low-Cost Silicone and Water-Based Soft Actuator with a High Load-to-Weight Ratio.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-21
    Junfeng Li,Minjie Sun,Zuqi Wu

    Traditional actuators, such as motors as well as hydraulic or pneumatic artificial muscles, demonstrate excessive noise, a heavy weight, and a large size, which limit their practical application in many areas. Therefore, for many decades, scientists have worked to develop new types of silent, small, and light actuators. In this article, a novel soft actuator (actuator3) with a high load-to-weight ratio

  • Rapid Soft Material Actuation Through Droplet Evaporation.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-21
    Han-Joo Lee,Peerasait Prachaseree,Kenneth J Loh

    Soft material actuation is a promising field that can potentially solve several limitations of traditional robotic systems. These systems comprise soft and flexible materials to achieve high degrees of freedom and compliance with their surroundings. One method to actuate such structures is to vaporize liquid that is embedded inside the soft material. The soft elastomers are inflated since the generated

  • Circular Shell Gripper for Handling Food Products.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-19
    Zhongkui Wang,Ryo Kanegae,Shinichi Hirai

    Pneumatically driven soft robotic grippers have been extensively studied in recent years. A majority of the grippers, especially those entirely composed of soft materials, can adapt to and handle various objects. However, there are limited studies regarding the realization of arbitrary grasping postures and twisting manipulation. Furthermore, the handling efficiency or the takt time of a handling task

  • MagWorm: A Biomimetic Magnet Embedded Worm-Like Soft Robot.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-19
    Hanqing Niu,Ruoyu Feng,Yuwei Xie,Bowen Jiang,Yongzhi Sheng,Yang Yu,Hexi Baoyin,Xiangyuan Zeng

    Emerging worm-like soft robots with various soft materials and different actuation mechanism have been frequently discussed. It is very challenging for soft robots in realizing a fast and untethered crawling. In this article, a biomimetic magnet embedded worm-like robot (shorted as “MagWorm”) in the size of centimeter level is designed and investigated. The actuation of the MagWorm is achieved by housing

  • A Soft Exoskeleton for Tremor Suppression Equipped with Flexible Semiactive Actuator.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-19
    Ahmad Zahedi,Bin Zhang,Andong Yi,Dingguo Zhang

    Pathological tremor is a kind of movement disorder that affects a wide range of patients with Parkinson's disease and essential tremor. Different from available clinical treatments for tremor, including drug and surgery therapy, a novel soft exoskeleton for tremor suppression (SETS) based on assistive technologies is proposed in this study. The SETS system is equipped with a controllable flexible semiactive

  • Fluid Mechanics of Pneumatic Soft Robots.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-19
    Peter Breitman,Yoav Matia,Amir D Gat

    Pressurization of gas within embedded channels and cavities is a popular method for actuating soft robots. Various previous works examined the effects of internal fluid mechanics on this actuation approach, as well as on leveraging viscous effects to extend the capabilities of soft robots. However, no existing works studied the combined effects of fluid viscosity and compressibility, relevant to miniaturized

  • Analytical Modeling and Design of Generalized Pneu-Net Soft Actuators with Three-Dimensional Deformations.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-19
    Guoying Gu,Dong Wang,Lisen Ge,Xiangyang Zhu

    Pneu-net soft actuators, consisting of pneumatic networks of small chambers embedded in elastomeric structures, are particularly promising candidates in the society of soft robotics. However, there are few studies on the analytical modeling of pneu-net soft actuators, especially in the three-dimensional space. In this article, based on the minimum potential energy method and the continuum rod theory

  • Limpet II: A Modular, Untethered Soft Robot.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-05
    Mohammed E Sayed,Jamie O Roberts,Ross M McKenzie,Simona Aracri,Anthony Buchoux,Adam A Stokes

    The ability to navigate complex unstructured environments and carry out inspection tasks requires robots to be capable of climbing inclined surfaces and to be equipped with a sensor payload. These features are desirable for robots that are used to inspect and monitor offshore energy platforms. Existing climbing robots mostly use rigid actuators, and robots that use soft actuators are not fully untethered

  • A Machine-Learning-Based Approach to Solve Both Contact Location and Force in Soft Material Tactile Sensors.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Luca Massari,Emiliano Schena,Carlo Massaroni,Paola Saccomandi,Arianna Menciassi,Edoardo Sinibaldi,Calogero Maria Oddo

    This study addresses a design and calibration methodology based on numerical finite element method (FEM) modeling for the development of a soft tactile sensor able to simultaneously solve the magnitude and the application location of a normal load exerted onto its surface. The sensor entails the integration of a Bragg grating fiber optic sensor in a Dragon Skin 10 polymer brick (110 mm length, 24 mm

  • Laser-Profiled Continuum Robot with Integrated Tension Sensing for Simultaneous Shape and Tip Force Estimation.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Anzhu Gao,Ning Liu,Mali Shen,Mohamed E M K Abdelaziz,Burak Temelkuran,Guang-Zhong Yang

    The development of miniaturized continuum robots has a wide range of applications in minimally invasive endoluminal interventions. To navigate inside tortuous lumens without impinging on the vessel wall and causing tissue damage or the risk of perforation, it is necessary to have simultaneous shape sensing of the continuum robot and its tip contact force sensing with the surrounding environment. Miniaturization

  • Self-Regulating Plant Robots: Bioinspired Heliotropism and Nyctinasty.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Suleyman Doruk Cezan,Hasan Tarik Baytekin,Bilge Baytekin

    Self-regulation (or so-called homeostasis) is a property of all living organisms to maintain an internal stable state through specialized biofeedback mechanisms under varying external and internal conditions. Although these feedback mechanisms in living organisms are complex networks and hard to implement one-to-one in artificial systems, the new approaches in soft robotics may benefit from the concept

  • A Wearable Soft Haptic Communicator Based on Dielectric Elastomer Actuators.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Huichan Zhao,Aftab M Hussain,Ali Israr,Daniel M Vogt,Mihai Duduta,David R Clarke,Robert J Wood

    Dielectric elastomer actuators exhibit an unusual combination of large displacements, moderate bandwidth, low power consumption, and mechanical impedance comparable with human skin, making them attractive for haptic devices. In this article, we propose a wearable haptic communication device based on a two-by-two array of dielectric elastomer linear actuators. We briefly describe the architecture of

  • Optical Sensor-Embedded Pneumatic Artificial Muscle for Position and Force Estimation.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Lucas O Tiziani,Frank L Hammond

    This study presents the design of a pneumatic artificial muscle with integrated soft optical sensing for estimation of muscle contraction length and contraction force. Each optical sensor uses an light emitting diode (LED)-photodiode pair to measure the light reflected by a silicone diaphragm embedded in the muscle. One diaphragm is designed to respond primarily to changes in muscle pressure, whereas

  • Experimental Investigation into the Dynamics of a Radially Contracting Actuator with Embedded Sensing Capability.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Yu Dang,Harish Devaraj,Martin Stommel,Leo K Cheng,Andrew J McDaid,Weiliang Xu

    Dynamics, control, and sensing are still challenges for pneumatically actuated soft actuators. We consider feasible solutions based on a radially contracting actuator to overcome these challenges. The radially contracting actuator was inspired by the movement of the stomach wall. It was capable of achieving radial contraction by inflating its circular air chamber. A quasi-static model that relates

  • A Bioinspired Soft Swallowing Robot Based on Compliant Guiding Structure.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Haili Li,Jiantao Yao,Chunye Liu,Pan Zhou,Yundou Xu,Yongsheng Zhao

    From small unicellular organisms to large mammals, swallowing is an important way for them to interact with their external environment. The majority of these animals swallow their targets for the purpose of hunting, and some fish and amphibians protect their cubs from external injury by swallowing them. Thus, swallowing can produce an efficient capture, keep the integrity of targets, and provide effective

  • Soft Rod-Climbing Robot Inspired by Winding Locomotion of Snake.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Bing Liao,Hongbin Zang,Mingyang Chen,Yunjie Wang,Xin Lang,Nana Zhu,Zheng Yang,Yan Yi

    Soft climbing robots have attracted much attention of researchers for their potential applications on the wall or inside the tube. However, making a soft robot climb on the outer surface of a rod or tube by agile and efficient motion has long been a challenge. Inspired by the winding climbing locomotion of arboreal snakes, a tethered pneumatic-actuated winding-styled soft rod-climbing robot that consists

  • A Super-Lightweight and Soft Manipulator Driven by Dielectric Elastomers.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Zhiguang Xing,Junming Zhang,David McCoul,Yanzhen Cui,Lining Sun,Jianwen Zhao

    Some applications are very sensitive to the weight of the robot, such as space manipulation or any untethered mobile manipulation. In this article, we designed a five-module unilaterally bending serial manipulator with length of 32 cm and a weight of only 18 g. The manipulator is driven by dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs). Each module consists of a spatially closed tubular structure, which has

  • Design and Development of a Growing Pneumatic Soft Robot.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-03
    Seref Kemal Talas,Bora Alp Baydere,Timur Altinsoy,Cem Tutcu,Evren Samur

    Soft continuum robots are getting more popular in areas such as minimally invasive surgery, search and rescue, and inspection due to their inherent compliance and flexibility. However, most of the conventional continuum robots still lack the ability to significantly change size and length. Growth as a means of robotic locomotion is a novel actuation method that can be used to overcome this disadvantage

  • A Cephalopod-Inspired Soft-Robotic Siphon for Thrust Vectoring and Flow Rate Regulation.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-04
    Runzhi Zhang,Zhong Shen,Hua Zhong,Jiyong Tan,Yong Hu,Zheng Wang

    Cephalopods could simultaneously achieve both accurate positioning and agile bodily maneuvers by coordinating the mantle and the funnel, which is ideal for underwater robotic applications toward a compact propulsor with combined thrust vectoring and regulation. For a wide range of underwater applications from videography to manipulation, this novel approach would offer a compact and integrated alternative

  • RoSE: A Robotic Soft Esophagus for Endoprosthetic Stent Testing.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-08-04
    Dipankar Bhattacharya,Sherine J V Ali,Leo K Cheng,Weiliang Xu

    Soft robotic systems are well suited for developing devices for biomedical applications. A bio-mimicking robotic soft esophagus (RoSE) is developed as an in vitro testing device of endoprosthetic stents for dysphagia management. Endoprosthetic stent placement is an immediate and cost-effective therapy for dysphagia caused by malignant esophageal strictures from esophageal cancer. However, later stage

  • Facile Analytical Extraction of the Hyperelastic Constants for the Two-Parameter Mooney-Rivlin Model from Experiments on Soft Polymers.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-30
    Tilvawala Gopesh,James Friend

    Having accurate data to represent hyperelastic materials that underpin soft robotics would facilitate their analysis, design, and validation. We seek to provide the reader with a useful tool to overcome a mundane but crucially important problem in determining the hyperelastic material properties. We show how to employ first dimensionless and then dimensional comparisons between experimental data and

  • An Origami Continuum Robot Capable of Precise Motion Through Torsionally Stiff Body and Smooth Inverse Kinematics.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-24
    Junius Santoso,Cagdas D Onal

    Continuum robot arms, with their hyper-redundant continuously deformable bodies, show great promise in applications deemed impossible for traditional rigid robot arms with discrete links and joints, such as navigating tight corners without getting stuck. However, existing continuum robots suffer from excessive twisting when subjected to offset loading, even resulting from their own body weight, which

  • Bone-Inspired Bending Soft Robot.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-17
    Saeed Hashemi,Darrin Bentivegna,William Durfee

    Bending soft robots must be structured and predictable to be used in applications such as a grasping hand. We developed soft robot fingers with embedded bones to improve the performance of a puppetry robot with haptic feedback. The manufacturing process for bone-inspired soft robots is described, and two mathematical models are reported: one to predict the stiffness and natural frequency of the robot

  • Soft Humanoid Hands with Large Grasping Force Enabled by Flexible Hybrid Pneumatic Actuators.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-16
    Xiaomin Liu,Yunwei Zhao,Dexu Geng,Shoue Chen,Xiaobo Tan,Changyong Cao

    Soft grippers and actuators have attracted increasing attention due to safer and more adaptable human–machine and environment–machine interactions than their rigid counterparts. In this study we present a novel soft humanoid hand that is capable of robustly grasping a variety of objects with different weights, sizes, shapes, textures, and stiffnesses. The soft hand fingers are made of flexible hybrid

  • Toward Task Autonomy in Robotic Cardiac Ablation: Learning-Based Kinematic Control of Soft Tendon-Driven Catheters.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-14
    Mohammad Jolaei,Amir Hooshiar,Javad Dargahi,Muthukumaran Packirisamy

    The goal of this study was to propose and validate a control framework with level-2 autonomy (task autonomy) for the control of flexible ablation catheters. To this end, a kinematic model for the flexible portion of typical ablation catheters was developed and a 40-mm-long spring-loaded flexible catheter was fabricated. The feasible space of the catheter was obtained experimentally. Furthermore, a

  • Modal-Based Kinematics and Contact Detection of Soft Robots.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-13
    Yue Chen,Long Wang,Kevin Galloway,Isuru Godage,Nabil Simaan,Eric Barth

    Soft robots offer an alternative approach to manipulate within a constrained space while maintaining a safe interaction with the external environment. Owing to its adaptable compliance characteristic, external contact force can easily deform the robot shapes and lead to undesired robot kinematic and dynamic properties. Accurate contact detection and contact location estimation are of critical importance

  • Recent Progress of Soft Electrothermal Actuators.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-13
    Ye Tian,Yu-Tao Li,He Tian,Yi Yang,Tian-Ling Ren

    Developing soft electrothermal actuators (ETAs) has drawn extensive concern in recent years. This article presents a comprehensive review on recent progress of soft ETAs through five sections: device design on structure and materials, property, fabrication methods, applications, and prospects. It's found that the fabrication process can be divided into standard surface complementary metal oxide semiconductor

  • 3D Upper Body Reconstruction with Sparse Soft Sensors.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-13
    Zhiyong Chen,Ronghui Wu,Shihui Guo,Xiangyang Liu,Hongbo Fu,Xiaogang Jin,Minghong Liao

    Three-dimensional (3D) reconstruction of human body has wide applications, for example, for customized design of clothes and digital avatar production. Existing vision-based systems for 3D body reconstruction require users to wear minimal or extreme-tight clothes in front of cameras, and thus suffer from privacy problems. In this work, we explore a novel solution based on a sparse number of soft sensors

  • A Flexible, Acoustic Localized Sensor with Mass Block-Beam Structure Based on Polydimethylsiloxane-Silver Nanowires.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-13
    Qiang Zhang,Chao Ji,Licheng Lv,Dong Zhao,Jianlong Ji,Kai Zhuo,Zhongyun Yuan,Wendong Zhang,Shengbo Sang

    The flexible strain sensor is a fast-moving technology and has been used in many fields. The array design and application based on flexible strain sensors have been the current research hotspots. However, there are few reports on research of acoustic positioning using the flexible sensor array. Herein, we designed and realized the consistent fabrication of a thin-film, acoustic sensor array. The acoustic

  • Global Vision-Based Formation Control of Soft Robotic Fish Swarm.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-07-10
    Zhen Zhang,Tao Yang,Tianhao Zhang,Fanghao Zhou,Nuo Cen,Tiefeng Li,Guangming Xie

    Possessing the attributes of high adaptability and low cost, soft robotic individuals can further coordinate and form into a swarming system, enhancing the performances as well as functions in practical applications. However, the formation control of soft robotic swarm remains challenging mainly due to the limitation in relatively low precision and slow response of the soft actuators. In this work

  • Pneumatic Supply System Parameter Optimization for Soft Actuators.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-29
    Sagar Joshi,Jamie Paik

    Soft actuators using pressurized air are being widely used due to their inherent compliance, conformability, and customizability. These actuators are powered and controlled by pneumatic supply systems (PSSs) consisting of components such as compressors, valves, tubing, and reservoirs. Regardless of the choice of actuator, the PSS critically affects overall performance of soft robots because it governs

  • Soft Actuators Based on Liquid-Vapor Phase Change Composites.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-25
    Xiying Li,Huiling Duan,Pengyu Lv,Xin Yi

    Liquid–vapor phase change materials (PCMs), capable of significant volume change, are emerging as attractive actuating components in forming advanced soft composites for robotic applications. However, the novel and functional design of these PCM composites is significantly limited due to the lacking of the fundamental understanding of the mechanical properties, which further inhibits the broad applications

  • Toward a Common Framework and Database of Materials for Soft Robotics.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-24
    Luc Marechal,Pascale Balland,Lukas Lindenroth,Fotis Petrou,Christos Kontovounisios,Fernando Bello

    To advance the field of soft robotics, a unified database of material constitutive models and experimental characterizations is of paramount importance. This will facilitate the use of finite element analysis to simulate their behavior and optimize the design of soft-bodied robots. Samples from seventeen elastomers, namely Body Double™ SILK, Dragon Skin™ 10 MEDIUM, Dragon Skin 20, Dragon Skin 30, Dragon

  • Tendon-Driven Jamming Mechanism for Configurable Variable Stiffness.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-22
    Jaehyeok Choi,Dae-Young Lee,Jun-Hyeok Eo,Yong-Jai Park,Kyu-Jin Cho

    Stiffness transition of a soft continuum body is an essential feature for dexterous interaction with an unstructured environment. Softness ensures safe interaction, whereas rigidness generates high force for movement or manipulation. Vacuum-based granular jamming is a widely used technique for on-line stiffness transition because of its high reconfigurability and intuitive driving method. However,

  • Twisted-and-Coiled Actuators with Free Strokes Enable Soft Robots with Programmable Motions.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-22
    Jiefeng Sun,Brandon Tighe,Yingxiang Liu,Jianguo Zhao

    Various actuators (e.g., pneumatics, cables, dielectric elastomers, etc.) have been utilized to actuate soft robots. Besides widely used actuators, a relatively new artificial muscle—twisted-and-coiled actuators (TCAs)—is promising for actuating centimeter-scale soft robots because they are low cost, have a large work density, and can be driven by electricity. However, existing works on TCA-actuated

  • SoGut: A Soft Robotic Gastric Simulator.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-19
    Yu Dang,Yuanxiang Liu,Ryman Hashem,Dipankar Bhattacharya,Jacqueline Allen,Martin Stommel,Leo K Cheng,Weiliang Xu

    The human stomach breaks down and transports food by coordinated radial contractions of the gastric walls. The radial contractions periodically propagate through the stomach and constitute the peristaltic contractions, also called the gastric motility. The force, amplitude, and frequency of peristaltic contractions are relevant to massaging and transporting the food contents in the gastric lumen. However

  • Fully Wearable Actuated Soft Exoskeleton for Grasping Assistance in Everyday Activities.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-18
    Tobias Bützer,Olivier Lambercy,Jumpei Arata,Roger Gassert

    Worldwide, over 50 million people suffer from persistent hand impairments after stroke or spinal cord injury (SCI). This results in major loss of independence and quality of life. Robotic hand exoskeletons can compensate for lost motor function and assist in grasping tasks performed in everyday activities. Several recent prototypes can partially provide this assistance. However, it remains challenging

  • Microwave-Assisted Synthesis of Stretchable and Transparent Poly(Ethyleneglycol-Sebacate) Elastomers with Autonomous Self-Healing and Capacitive Properties.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-17
    Gülçin Günal,Meltem Okan,Dincer Gokcen,Tuncer Caykara,Halil Murat Aydin

    Introducing functional synthetic biomaterials to the literature became quite essential in biomedical technologies. For the growth of novel biomedical engineering approaches, progressive functional properties as well as the robustness of the manufacturing processes are essential. By using acid-induced epoxide ring-opening polymerizations through catalysts, a wide variety of biodegradable and functionalized

  • Characteristic Analysis and Design Optimization of Bubble Artificial Muscles.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-17
    Richard Suphapol Diteesawat,Tim Helps,Majid Taghavi,Jonathan Rossiter

    Soft robotics requires new actuators and artificial muscles that are lighter, less expensive, and more effective than current technologies. Recently developed bubble artificial muscles (BAMs) are lightweight, flexible, inexpensive, pneumatic actuators with the capability of being scalable, contracting at a low pressure, and generating sufficient tension and contraction for assisting human mobility

  • Untethered-Bioinspired Quadrupedal Robot Based on Double-Chamber Pre-charged Pneumatic Soft Actuators with Highly Flexible Trunk.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-10
    Yujia Li,Tao Ren,Yunquan Li,Qingyou Liu,Yonghua Chen

    Given that mobile soft robots are adaptable to the environment, they are always tethered with slow locomotion speed. Compared with other types of mobile robots, mobile soft robots may be more suitable for rescuing tasks, accompanying elderly people, and being used as a safe toy for children. However, the infinite freedom of soft robots increases the difficulty of precision control. In addition, the

  • Tapered Polymer Whiskers to Enable Three-Dimensional Tactile Feature Extraction.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-08
    David W Collinson,Hannah M Emnett,Jinqiang Ning,Mitra J Z Hartmann,Lynda Catherine Brinson

    Many mammals use their vibrissae (whiskers) to tactually explore their surrounding environment. Vibrissae are thin tapered structures that transmit mechanical signals to a wealth of mechanical receptors (sensors) located in a follicle at each vibrissal base. A recent study has shown that—provided that the whisker is tapered—three mechanical signals at the base are sufficient to determine the three-dimensional

  • Soluble Polymer Pneumatic Networks and a Single-Pour System for Improved Accessibility and Durability of Soft Robotic Actuators.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Alexander H Greer,Edward King,Elijah H Lee,Aditya N Sardesai,Yiheng Chen,Safa E Obuz,Yan Graf,Toby Ma,Daniel Y Chow,Tianshi Fu,Josiah Somani,Bram Schork,Yeshwin Sankuratri,Troy Barnes,Bryce Broadus,Calvin Costner,Holly M Golecki

    Soft robotic devices can be used to demonstrate mechanics, robotics, and health care devices in classrooms. The complexity of soft robotic actuator fabrication has limited its classroom use. We propose a single-mold method of fabricating soluble insert actuators (SIAs) to simplify existing actuator fabrication methods using common accessible materials. This was accomplished by embedding molded soluble

  • Maximal Performance of an Antagonistically Coupled Dielectric Elastomer Actuator System.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Vy Tran Khanh Vo,Marcelo H Ang,Soo Jin Adrian Koh

    Dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) have been shown to produce electrically induced strains beyond 500%. The ability to undergo large deformation allows the DEA to store large amounts of elastic energy by electrical actuation; it also allows the DEA to perform flexibly in a diverse range of motions. Existing studies used different methods to maximize actuation strain for soft robotic applications

  • Rolling Locomotion of Cable-Driven Soft Spherical Tensegrity Robots.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Kyunam Kim,Adrian K Agogino,Alice M Agogino

    Soft spherical tensegrity robots are novel steerable mobile robotic platforms that are compliant, lightweight, and robust. The geometry of these robots is suitable for rolling locomotion, and they achieve this motion by properly deforming their structures using carefully chosen actuation strategies. The objective of this work is to consolidate and add to our research to date on methods for realizing

  • Twisted Rubber Variable-Stiffness Artificial Muscles.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Tim Helps,Majid Taghavi,Sihan Wang,Jonathan Rossiter

    Variable-stiffness artificial muscles are important in many applications including running and hopping robots, human–robot interaction, and active suspension systems. Previously used technologies include pneumatic muscles, layer and granular jamming, series elastic actuators, and shape memory polymers. All these are limited in terms of cost, complexity, the need for fluid power supplies, or controllability

  • Design, Analysis, and Grasping Experiments of a Novel Soft Hand: Hybrid Actuator Using Shape Memory Alloy Actuators, Motors, and Electromagnets.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Junfeng Li,Minjie Sun,Zuqi Wu,Haibin Yin

    Soft hands based only on an actuator system using a motor, air compressor, or smart material show obvious shortcomings due to the characteristics of each actuator. In this article, to overcome the weaknesses of each actuator system, a novel soft hand with a hybrid actuator system is presented to improve the grasping capacity and complete complex tasks, as the individual actuators can complement each

  • Phase Changing Materials-Based Variable-Stiffness Tensegrity Structures.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Davide Zappetti,Seung Hee Jeong,Jun Shintake,Dario Floreano

    Soft robots leverage deformable bodies to achieve different types of locomotion, improve transportability, and safely navigate cluttered environments. In this context, variable-stiffness structures provide soft robots with additional properties, such as the ability to increase forces transmitted to the environment, to lock into different body configurations, and to reduce the number of actuators required

  • MakeSense: Automated Sensor Design for Proprioceptive Soft Robots.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Javier Tapia,Espen Knoop,Mojmir Mutný,Miguel A Otaduy,Moritz Bächer

    Soft robots have applications in safe human–robot interactions, manipulation of fragile objects, and locomotion in challenging and unstructured environments. In this article, we present a computational method for augmenting soft robots with proprioceptive sensing capabilities. Our method automatically computes a minimal stretch-receptive sensor network to user-provided soft robotic designs, which is

  • Efficient Multiaxial Shoulder-Motion Tracking Based on Flexible Resistive Sensors Applied to Exosuits.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    J Luis Samper-Escudero,Aldo F Contreras-González,Manuel Ferre,Miguel A Sánchez-Urán,David Pont-Esteban

    This article describes the performance of a flexible resistive sensor network to track shoulder motion. This system monitors every gesture of the human shoulder in its range of motion except rotations around the longitudinal axis of the arm. In this regard, the design considers the movement of the glenohumeral, acromioclavicular, sternoclavicular, and scapulothoracic joints. The solution presented

  • Hybrid Jamming for Bioinspired Soft Robotic Fingers.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Yang Yang,Yazhan Zhang,Zicheng Kan,Jielin Zeng,Michael Yu Wang

    This article describes a novel design of bioinspired soft robotic fingers based upon hybrid jamming principle—integrated layer jamming and particle jamming. The finger combines a fiber-reinforced soft pneumatic actuator with a hybrid jamming substrate. Taking advantage of different characteristics of layer jamming and particle jamming, the substrate is designed with three chambers filled with layers

  • Shape Memory Alloy-Based Soft Finger with Changeable Bending Length Using Targeted Variable Stiffness.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Wei Wang,Chak Yuk Yu,Pablo Antonio Abrego Serrano,Sung-Hoon Ahn

    This work described a bioinspired soft robotic finger with variable bending length to conform objects with different sizes by means of selectively varying the structural stiffness of its segments. The basic design is a shape memory alloy-based soft actuator with embedded stiffness-varying structures serving as modifiable endoskeletons. The stiffness-varying structure is composed of shape memory polymer

  • All-Soft Skin-Like Structures for Robotic Locomotion and Transportation.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Jianglong Guo,Chaoqun Xiang,Andrew Conn,Jonathan Rossiter

    Human skins are active, smart, and stretchable. Artificial skins that can replicate these properties are promising materials and technologies that will enable lightweight, cost-effective, portable, and deployable soft devices and robots. We show an active, stretchable, and portable artificial skin (ElectroSkin) that combines dielectric elastomer actuators (DEAs) and soft electroadhesives (EAs) in a

  • A Novel Fabric Muscle Based on Shape Memory Alloy Springs.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Seong Jun Park,Uikyum Kim,Cheol Hoon Park

    Fabric muscle is important for wearable robots that are soft, compliant, and silent with high contractility and high force. This study presents a novel shape memory alloy (SMA) spring-based fabric muscle (SFM). The SFM is manufactured by bundling SMA springs with proven performance as artificial muscle. The SFM generates high contractility and high force, and is soft, flexible, and light because it

  • Bioinspired Three-Dimensional-Printed Helical Soft Pneumatic Actuators and Their Characterization.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-06-02
    Weiping Hu,Gursel Alici

    Soft pneumatic actuators (SPAs) are widely studied and applied in the field of soft robotics. To expand their applications, the SPAs should be purpose-built to generate application-specific complex motions with multiple degrees of freedom. This article describes a new SPA consisting of a series of internal chambers with the same helix angle arranged in a row, which could generate bending and twisting

  • A Layer Jamming Actuator for Tunable Stiffness and Shape-Changing Devices.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-05-26
    Michele Ibrahimi,Linda Paternò,Leonardo Ricotti,Arianna Menciassi

    Changing the shape and the stiffness of a device in a dynamic and controlled way enables important advancements in the field of robotics and wearable robotics. Variable stiffness materials and technologies can be used to address this challenge. In particular, layer jamming actuation is a very promising technology, featured by high efficiency and low cost. In this article, a stiffness- and shape-changing

  • Flexible Capacitive Curvature Sensor with One-Time Calibration for Amphibious Gait Monitoring.
    Soft Robot. (IF 5.543) Pub Date : 2020-05-26
    Xin Li,Jiajie Guo,Xingxing Ma,Luye Yang,Kok-Meng Lee,Caihua Xiong

    Wearable devices developed with flexible electronics have great potential applications for human health monitoring and motion sensing. Although material softness and structural flexibility provide a deformable human–machine interface to adapt to joint bending or tissue stretching/compression, flexible sensors are inconvenient in practical uses as they usually require calibration every time they are

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