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[2022-Vol.19-Issue 3]Bionics-based Optimization of Step-climbing Gait in a Novel Mini-RHex Robot
Post: 2022-05-20 11:20  View:146

Journal of Bionic Engineering (2022) 19:616–628  https://doi.org/10.1007/s42235-022-00160-w 

Bionics-based Optimization of Step-climbing Gait in a Novel Mini-RHex Robot 

Xingguo Song1  · Jiajun Pan1  · Xiaolong Zhang1  · Chunjun Chen1  · Danshan Huang2

1 Mechanical Engineering School, Southwest Jiaotong University, Chengdu 610031, China
2 41st Detachment, Unit 32272, Chinese People’s Liberation Army, Deyang 618408, China 

Abstract  RHex-style robots can perform manifold moving gaits in diferent applications, but they have always faced a challenge of climbing up high obstacles. In this paper, the bionics-based gait optimization in an RHex-style robot is proposed for climbing steps at diferent heights, which even enables the robot to climb up the step with 4.2 times of the leg length. First, a thoracic fexion is designed in the robot, and an algorithm of adjusting body inclination is proposed to perform the rising stage after placing front legs on top of step, which can be applied in diferent RHex-style robots with diferent sizes. Especially, when the thoracic fexion is implemented, the robot can climb the higher step with the proposed algorithm. Second, to climbing the higher steps, a claw-shape legs-based algorithm is proposed for robot reaching the higher step and climbing it up. During the vital rising stage, when the front legs of the robot have reached the top of the step, the robot can bend the front body downward with its thoracic fexion like a cockroach, and then lift the front and middle legs alternately to move COM up and forward onto the step. The simulation analysis is utilized to verify the feasibility of the proposed algorithms. Finally, the step-climbing experiments at diferent heights are performed in our robot to compare with the existing works. The results of simulations and experiments show the superiority of the proposed algorithms for the improved robot due to climbing up the higher steps. 

Keywords  Mini-RHex robot · Climbing gait · Thoracic fexion · Gait optimization · Claw-shape legs

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Robot information: a the improved mini-RHex robot; b symbols of the robot’s dimensions

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