Design and control of a 3D printed, 6DoF robot arm

University essay from KTH/Mekatronik

Abstract: The purpose of this thesis was to design, construct and control a robotic arm with six degrees of freedom. The arm should be able to do simple tasks such as pick and place with good accuracy and without using external sensors. This thesis investigates the precision and the strength of the constructed robot arm. The arm was constructed using 3D printed parts and commonly available hardware such as threaded rods, bearings, screws and nuts. Each axis uses a combination of pulleys and belts in order to achieve desired torque. A differential transmission was implemented in four of the axes in order to combine the power of the motors and reduce weight in the upper parts of the arm. The robot is driven by six stepper motors that are controlled by a combination of RAMPS 1.4 shield and Arduino Mega 2560 microcontroller. The user can manipulate each axis by sending commands to the Arduino through an USB cable. The commands are generated with the help of a simple user interface written in Python. Experiments have shown that the arm has an average error increase of 0.0289-0.1356 mm for each movement, depending on the chosen speed. The maximum amount ofweight that the arm can hold in the worst case scenario is 0.84 kg.

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