Universal Telerobotic-Master Device with Advanced Feedback

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-FG02-02ER83371
Agency Tracking Number: 70616S02-II
Amount: $600,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2003
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
139 Main Street, Kendall Square, Cambridge, MA, 02142
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 William Townsend
 (617) 252-9000
Business Contact
 Burton Doo
Phone: (617) 252-9000
Email: bd@barrett.com
Research Institution
70616S02-II Of the handful of telerobotic masters available, few provide force feedback to the user. This lack of feedback significantly reduces effectiveness in the complex and cluttered remote-work environments typical of DOE Environmental Management (EM) activities. In addition, these masters tend to be cumbersome, fatiguing, and non-intuitive; and none has provisions for controlling multi-fingered end effectors. This project will develop a telerobotic master device with full 6-axis force-reflection and control of slave-hand grasping forces, to create a highly functional control station with advanced computer-generated virtual-force guidance. The system will be lightweight, comfortably intuitive to operate, and universal to DOE slave manipulators in EM operations. In Phase I, a systems design for a full turn-key, universal, force-reflecting telerobotic workstation was completed. Engineering calculations were performed and hardware prototypes were constructed for a 4-amp-continuous, vector-based, brushless motor controller, which is 10 times smaller than the best commercially available brushless-DC motor controller, and is deployed along a bus. Phase II will complete the development of the full turn-key system, with all software and hardware integrated into a single shipable station. The system will be built and realistic EM tasks of increasing complexity will be used as a basis for laboratory experiments to demonstrate effectiveness. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by awardee: The force-reflecting master controller should meet DOE requirements for teleoperation. Immediate applications should include homeland security inspection/response, military explosive ordnance disposal, delicate surgery, and rehabilitation for spinal injury and stroke victims.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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