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Implementation and Evaluation of a Semi-Autonomous Hydraulic Dual Manipulator for Cutting Pipework in Radiologically Active Environments

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Article number62
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>27/04/2021
Issue number2
Number of pages15
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


We describe the implementation of a bespoke two arm hydraulically actuated robotic platform which is used to semi-autonomously cut approximately 50 mm diameter pipes of three different materials: cardboard, ABS plastic and aluminium. The system is designed to be utilised within radiologically active environments where human access is limited due to dose limits and thus remote operation is greatly beneficial. The remotely located operator selects the object from an image via a bespoke algorithm featuring a COTS 3 D vision system, along with the desired positions for gripping with one manipulator, and cutting with the other. A pseudo-Jacobian inverse kinematic technique and a programmable automation controller are used to achieve the appropriate joint positions within the dual arm robotic platform. In this article, we present the latest developments to the system and the lessons learnt from the new cutting experiments with a reciprocating saw. A comparison to tele-operated control and manual cutting is also made, with this technique shown to be slower than manual cutting, but faster than pure tele-operational control, where the requirements for highly trained users and operator fatigue are further deleterious factors.