[robotics-worldwide] PhD in Recofigurable

Ferdinando Cannella Ferdinando.Cannella at iit.it
Thu Sep 13 08:57:52 PDT 2012

PhD Opening in Reconfigurable Multifinger Robot
Department of Advanced Robotics
Italian Institute of Technology

Theme 3.24 Development of reconfigurable multifinger robot for carton folding using the virtual prototyping (CAE)

Tutor: Dr. Ferdinando Cannella

Nowadays the packaging is one of the technology applied worldwide because all the goods exchanged (sold or bought) are packed. Half of the study in this field is on the speed manufacturing that reached very good results for simple boxes; the complex carton, in the inverse, are far from reliable solutions and large part of this production is still by hands. Despite this huge effort, till now few manipulators are built suitable for factories (as D-RAPS or ARCHAPS) and that demonstrates the difficult of this challenge.  In fact, the reconfigurability of the cartons not only requires dexterous manipulator, but for make competitive the device, even a deep  knowledge of the cartonboard. Goal of this PhD is to design and build a new reconfigurable device able to fold origami carton autonomously depending on the initial final shape. This mechanism will be useful for study the cartonboard behaviour during the folding and the new design of them. That means a virtual prototype of this device will be done in order to simulate the manipulation, so the best solution will be found quicker, because few physical prototyping will be necessary. So the study will be divided in two part: carton board mechanical properties investigation and carton folding manipulator design. The first one involves the experimental tests on carton and paper in order to determine the crease and panels stiffness. Second one concerns the theory of the manipulation and hierarchy of the panel rotation. Together will permit to simulate the physic modelling of origami carton folding. Considering the small forces and torques used in these folding, the feedback in the control will be very complex because the measurement signal are always very weak compared to the noise given by the cartonboard dynamics (e.g. the backlashes or panel bending). The paten should be another goal of this study.
This work will be developed in strong collaboration with King's College of London, UK under supervision of Prof. Jian S. Dai
Requirements: this position is open to a PhD candidate with strong interesting in reconfigurable mechanism and skill in mechanics. The background must be in mechanical/mechatronic engineer or robotics. The ideal competencies should be in multibody simulation/finite element analysis and robot dynamics and control.

Required technical skills: 50% mechanics, 25% control, 25% kinematics
For further details concerning this research project, please contact: ferdinando.cannella at iit.it<mailto:ferdinando.cannella at iit.it>

Dr Ferdinando Cannella

Team Leader
Advanced Robotics Department
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
[Italian Institute of Technology]
Via Morego, 30
16163 Genova (Italy)
t: + 39 010 71 781 562
m: +39 338 96 76 884
f: + 39 010 71 781 232

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