Volume 27 Issue 3-4 - Publication Date: 1 March 2008
Automatic Modular Assembly System and its Distributed Control
Yuzuru Terada and Satoshi Murata Interdisciplinary Graduate School of Science and Engineering, Tokyo Institute of Technology
Construction is difficult to automate because of its complexity. Introducing modularity into both structural components and a means of assembly solves the problem by simplifying the construction task. Based on this idea, we propose a novel concept of a fully automated construction system called the Automatic Modular Assembly System (AMAS). In this paper, we discuss the hardware system and distributed control method of AMAS. This system uses passive building blocks called “structure modules” and an assembler robot that is specialized to handle them. This “modular” concept drastically simplifies structural complexity. We have built a prototype model to evaluate its automatic construction capability. Then we introduce a distributed autonomous control for AMAS, which uses a gradient field to indicate the directions to the assembler robots. The gradient field is generated on the structure modules. To improve the efficiency, we introduce collision avoidance rules such as module relay and local negotiation via a blackboard. We also evaluate the overall performance of the distributed control with simulations.
Multimedia Key
= Video = Data = Code = Image
Example 1: Motion of the connection mechanism. (1.45 MB) avi
Example 2: Assembly task using the prototype hardware. (2.06 MB) mpeg
Example 3: Result of the simulation assembling an L-shaped structure a using continuous field. (4.19 MB) mpeg
Example 4: Result of the simulation assembling a T-shaped structure using a continuous field. (3.53 MB) mpeg
Example 5: Result of the simulation assembling an L-shaped structure using a discrete field with module relay. (5.53 MB) mpeg
Example 6: Robust assembly with module removal. (1.62 MB) mpeg
Example 7: Robust assembly with communication breakdown. (2.06 MB) mpeg
Example 8: Assembling a bridge using disassemble and reassemble. (3.51 MB) mpeg
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