SBIR Phase I: Force-Reflective Dexterous Telerobotic Manipulators

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 0912913
Agency Tracking Number: 0912913
Amount: $99,999.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2009
Solitcitation Year: N/A
Solitcitation Topic Code: EL
Solitcitation Number: NSF 08-548
Small Business Information
VPI Engineering
11814 S Election Rd., Suite 200, Draper, UT, 84020
Duns: 175862648
Hubzone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Gordon Olsen
 (801) 495-2310
Business Contact
 Gordon Olsen
Title: MEE
Phone: (801) 495-2310
Research Institution
This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I research project involves the development of inexpensive, reconfigurable force-reflective telerobotic manipulators. Incorporating dexterous manipulators onto available mobile robotic platforms greatly expands the capabilities and usefulness of the systems, providing telerobotic operators the ability to safely touch, feel, and interact with objects in remote, unknown, and possibly hazardous environments. Currently available mobile robots and remote manipulation systems do not have the dexterity and portability needed for many of these situations, nor the cost effectiveness to be affordable by target users. These systems can break down doors but cannot open them. They can pick up and transport objects, but cannot easily open a door, trunk, or hood of a car. The proposed system will be a high fidelity dexterous system that can perform these tasks. This proposal is a unique application of existing technology with proposed innovations for improved intersystem stiffness and force-reflection bandwidth. The development of the proposed technology will also promote faster deployment into the field and enable applications supporting a broader spectrum of tasks, providing telerobotic operators, from a safe distance, the ability to more transparently sense and accurately control the interactive forces that are experienced at the point of manipulation during the execution of a task. Commercial potential for this technology lies in manufacturing and industrial robotics, defusing and examining improvised explosive devices or bombs, performing medical triage from a remote location, and tactile examination and manipulation of dangerous or hazardous materials in remote environments for military, homeland security and industrial applications. This award is funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-5).

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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