Kinova Robotics needed to derive and manage advanced algorithms to safely control their flagship robotic arm, JACO. They were searching for a high-performance computation tool robust enough to handle this challenge.
Using Maple, Kinova was able to manage large equations and matrix computations and return symbolic solutions faster and more accurately than with any other software tool.
Maple was more accurate, faster and more intuitive than any other product, which significantly reduced their development time. The resulting design was able to determine hand position faster and with more refined control, ultimately creating a better user experience for people with limited upper-body mobility.
Kinova Robotics designs and manufactures innovative robotics products for personal assistance and service functions. Their flagship robotic arm JACO, now in its second generation, enriches the lives of people with limited upper-body mobility by enabling them to perform routine daily tasks safely and independently. Maple™, Maplesofts flagship product for technical computing and documentation, was used by engineers at Kinova to derive and manage the complex matrix equations that underlie the advanced algorithms which control the JACO robotic arm, leading to improved functionality.
JACO features six interlinked segments - the last of which is a three-fingered hand – and operates with 6 degrees of freedom. With a reach of 90cm, it can be mounted onto a motorized wheelchair or a fixed base. Using a joystick controller, the user can move the robots hand in three-dimensional space to grasp and release objects as required, to perform routine tasks.
Kinovas Robotic Algorithms and Control Team faced a key challenge in the design of the arms controller. In order to safely operate the robotic arm, they needed to design advanced algorithms involving large matrix equations to calculate the kinematics and applied forces through the arm.
An added complexity is that these computations, which are run on a microcontroller, must be performed repeatedly, at very short time intervals. Therefore, the algorithms must be continuously refreshed at a rapid rate, which creates a very large matrix of simultaneous trigonometric equations.
Picking up a bottle with brain power
Caltec implant allows paralyzed man to move a robotic arm using his imagination. Paralyzed from the neck down after suffering a gunshot wound, Erik Sorto is the first person in the world to have a neural prosthetic device implanted in a region of the brain where initial intentions to make a movement are formed.Hear more on Science in Action from the BBC http://bbc.in/1FAQScDPosted by BBC Science News on Thursday, May 21, 2015
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