The Peppermill-carrier (PMC), a Novel Pick-and-place (P&P) Robot
The most frequent P&P operations involve three independent translations and one
rotation about an axis of fixed direction, usually vertical. The set of
displacements involved is termed Schönflies.
Current industrial P&P robots, intended for fast operations, carry four limbs,
which poses a challenge to the realization of half turns, mandatory in these
operations. A novel concept, comprising only two limbs, was disclosed by C.C.
Lee and P.C. Lee in a by-invitation-only symposium in December 2009. The
authors published their disclosure later in a book (Lou, Y. and Li, Z.,
Geometric Methods in Robotics and Mechanism Research. Theory and Applications,
Lambert Academic Publishing, Saarbrücken, Germany). This ingenious
solution, however, relies on a two-degree-of-freedom (two-dof) drive to produce
the rotation of a collar about an axis and its translation in the directions of
the axis. Rsearch at the Robotic Mechanical Systems Laboratory (RMSLab), based
on theoretical kinematics Lie groups, led to a novel two-dof drive, termed the
Lee and Lee's idea was realized at RMSLab using, two C-drives, in a
Schönflies-Motion Generator (SMG), dubbed the Peppermill-carrier, as the
gripper, in the form of a long rod, is actuated by means of the gesture of
waiters in Italian restaurants when serving pepper using a long peppermill.
For a pdf presentation of the system, see PMCdevelopment.pdf. For the videos of the system, please click PMCtestcycle.wmv, PMCdemo.wmv. (Prototype, videos, photo and slides were produced by Thomas
For videos of the C-drive, click Translation.AVI, Rotation.AVI, Helix.AVI, RHHR3mtns.mp4.