Hardware

Hands in the Air if your Robot Handles Eggs

Posted 27 Jun 2007 at 15:41 UTC by steve Share This

The Swirling Brain alerted us to a breitbart.com story about another "world's first", this time a Kyoto robotics company named Squse is claiming to have created the world's first robot hand powered by air muscles and able to do delicate tasks like handling an egg. The main visible difference between this and previous air muscle hands seems to be that Squse covered theirs with a flesh-colored glove. The UK Shadow Robot Company shipped an air muscle hand called Shadow Hand in 2005 and demonstrated prototypes as early as 2001. The Squse site has video of the hand attached to an android arm and torso. The Squse press release has some additional photos. Interestingly, there didn't seem to be any photos of the Squse hand gripping an egg but here's the Shadow Hand holding an egg.

Third at best, posted 29 Jun 2007 at 05:03 UTC by Daniel Casner » (Journeyer)

I'm extremely disappointed at how little looking at the rest of the world Squse must have done to think they were making a "world's first." As mentioned in the article, Shadow Robot Company has had an air muscle powered hand capable of handling eggs and delicate fruit.

The real problem with air muscles is not delicate manipulation but strength. I'd be interested to see if the Squse hand would even be capable of breaking an egg in its grip. At Anybots, our robot Monty has two hands, one human-like with 18 degrees of freedom and electrically actuated and the other an air powered gripper. Both have fine enough control to pick up an egg and enough strength to crush an egg or even a soda can. We will be posting some videos of this soon.

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