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Published on Aug 5, 2010
Stanford University has developed a low-cost, 7-degree-of-freedom robotic arm. The arm is made from lasercut plywood, and is powered by four stepper motors in the base and three small dynamixel servo motors in the lower arm. It is series-elastic so it is compliant if you push on it. This is done via rubber tubes that get squished between two plates, as can be seen in the video. The arm is also human-safe because it is pretty light, in addition to the compliance. The teleoperation scheme is done using a shirt with sensors in it (accelerometers and magnetometers) that detect the wearer's pose. The computer the solves for the location of the wearer's hand, and inverse kinematics are used to get the robot's gripper to track that location. The robot is running the Robot Operating System (ROS). Made by Morgan Quigley, Alan Asbeck, and Andrew Ng.