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Human-Like Grasping and Manipulation (2024-2025)

The aim of this project is to enable robots to grasp and manipulate objects like humans do. If robots obtain humanlike grasping and manipulation capabilities, then feeding systems, custom finger design, and vision-based pinpicking would be obsolete for low-volume production. Thus, it is our hypothesis that the introduction of a universal gripper – a human-like hand – will enable hyper flexible robotic assembly.

Robot grippers used in industry typically have few degrees of freedom - most just one, and typically no sense of touch. Commercial anthropomorphic grippers are available; however, these grippers are mainly used for research. Reasons for the limited use of anthropomorphic grippers are their price and the difficulty in programming the hand. The commercial anthropomorphic grippers have basic tactile sensing; however, commercial tactile sensors that can be integrated with the grippers do exist. Cheap tactile sensors are today available for research and will soon be available for commercial use.  

The aim of this project is to use commercially available five-finger anthropomorphic grippers with high-resolution tactile sensors to show that current technology in robotics and sensing can be used for industrial assembly. The project will target an assembly case, where parts are picked from bins, reoriented in the hand, and subsequently assembled in a product and thus provide a proof of human-like grasping and manipulation for the future manufacturing. Initial simulation studies show that in-hand pose estimation is possible with current sensing technology. 

The project is funded by Fabrikant Vilhelm Pedersen og Hustrus Legat. 

Professor Christoffer Sloth

SDU Robotics University of Southern Denmark

  • Campusvej 55
  • Odense M - DK-5230

Last Updated 11.01.2024