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Publication - Dr Andrew Conn

    De-electroadhesion of Flexible and Lightweight Materials

    An Experimental Study

    Citation

    Cao, C, Gao, X, Guo, J & Conn, A, 2019, ‘De-electroadhesion of Flexible and Lightweight Materials: An Experimental Study’. Applied Sciences (Switzerland), vol 9.

    Abstract

    Electroadhesion (EA) is an emerging prehension method with wide application in robotics, including object handling, component assembly, and robotic locomotion. A major challenge with EA is the development of novel solutions for speeding up the release process, where residual charges inhibit release. In this work, a comprehensive study on the effects of EA base substrate and object material types on de-electroadhesion time is presented. Experimental results show that the de-electroadhesion speed is highly dependent on the base substrate and object material type. There is a strong inverse correlation between dielectric constant and de-electroadhesion rate, while a higher molecular weight demonstrates slower dielectric relaxation and hence release time. These findings will enable the design of cost-effective EA-based robotic end effectors with rapid release capabilities. EA grippers with quicker de-adhesion abilities could significantly improve the overall throughput of assembly lines where material pick-and-place tasks are involved. In addition, more efficient and faster locomotion speeds could be achieved for crawling or climbing robots where EA is employed as their active adhesion and de-adhesion feet.

    Full details in the University publications repository