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Artigo sobre músculo artificial pneumático (PAM).

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Mechatronics

journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/mechatronics

network approach

Chunsheng Song a,, Shengquan Xie b, Zude Zhou a, Yefa Hu a

a

b

School of Mechanical and Electronic Engineering, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan 430070, China

Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand

a r t i c l e

i n f o

Article history:

Received 15 September 2014

Revised 13 March 2015

Accepted 27 April 2015

Available online 29 June 2015

Keywords:

Pneumatic articial muscle

Dynamic modeling

Hybrid approach

Articial neural network

Genetic algorithm

a b s t r a c t

Pneumatic Articial Muscle (PAM) actuator has been widely used in medical and rehabilitation robots,

owing to its high power-to-weight ratio and inherent safety characteristics. However, the PAM exhibits

highly non-linear and time variant behavior, due to compressibility of air, use of elastic-viscous material

as core tube and pantographic motion of the PAM outer sheath. It is difcult to obtain a precise model

using analytical modeling methods. This paper proposes a new Articial Neural Network (ANN) based

modeling approach for modeling PAM actuator. To obtain higher precision ANN model, three different

approaches, namely, Back Propagation (BP) algorithm, Genetic Algorithm (GA) approach and hybrid

approach combing BP algorithm with Modied Genetic Algorithm (MGA) are developed to optimize

ANN parameters. Results show that the ANN model using the GA approach outperforms the BP algorithm,

and the hybrid approach shows the best performance among the three approaches.

2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

1. Introduction

Pneumatic Articial Muscle (PAM) is a biomimetic device that

mimics the behavior of skeletal muscles. It exhibits forcelength

characteristics similar to that of a human muscle. PAM has simple

construction and consists of a rubber tube connected to pneumatic

valves at one end. The rubber tube is housed in a sheath made-up

of non-elastic and high-strength bers. The bers are arranged in a

rhomboidal fashion, which allows a dened contraction motion in

a longitudinal direction when the inner tube is inated which

results in shortening of the PAM. Consequently, force is exerted

by the PAM on the environment, attached at the other end, in

the axial direction. Compared to conventional actuators such as

electric and hydraulic actuators, PAM draws certain advantages

such as high power-to-weight and high power-to-volume ratios,

low maintenance, low price, cleanliness, compliance, pliability,

inherent safety, and applicability in rough environments. Air compressibility and elasticity of inner tube also plays cushioning role

against unpredictable impacts. Owing to these advantages, PAM

is considered an attractive and safe actuator to use in devices operating in human proximity compared to electric or hydraulic

actuators.

Corresponding author. Tel.: +86 13437161368.

E-mail address: song_chsh@163.com (C. Song).

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mechatronics.2015.04.021

0957-4158/ 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

hydraulic and electric actuators in medical and rehabilitation robot

applications. A few examples of the successful use of PAMs in

mechatronic devices for rehabilitation purposes can be found in

the literature. Applications in the form of an exoskeleton exist

for upper limbs [1,2] lower limbs [3], hand [4], elbow [5], and

the ankle joint [6].

Unfortunately, PAM exhibits highly nonlinear pressurelength

characteristics and time-variant properties due to compressibility

of air, elastic-viscous properties of the inner tube and geometrically complex behaviors of the PAM shell. Rubber like behavior of

the inner tube also lead to hysteresis and hence the PAM shows

different characteristics during inating and deating. Thus, it is

not easy to control them and obtain the required performance features. In view of this, previous studies have focused on methods for

modeling of pneumatic muscles and controller design to improve

control performance in recent years, including [7,8].

Considering that the precise modeling of PAMs can be the rst

step in improving the control performance of system, this paper

presents the dynamic modeling of PAM. In order to identify behavior of a PAM, many models to estimate behavior of PAMs have been

proposed in the past. The pioneering work in the eld of PAM modeling can be classied into two aspects, analytical modeling and

articial intelligence-based modeling identication.

125

adopter. Initially, to reduce the model complexity, elastic energy

contained in the inner tube was ignored and the relations between

axial force, length and pressure were formulated based on the principle of virtual work [9]. Later, nonlinear characteristics of PAM

were addressed which included, irregular geometric shape of the

rubber tube [10,11], elastic energy of the inner tube [12], and hysteresis behaviors of PAMs. A friction model was also developed for

the thread-on-thread friction in the braided shell [9,10,13]. Until

recently, most researches have been focused on the static characteristics of PAMs assuming no pressure variance inside the tube

during very slow motions. Chou and Hannafordpresented a simple

lumped-parameter model of pneumatic circuits to estimate

dynamic response of pneumatic circuits [14]. Kang and Kothera

proposed a dynamic modeling of PAM [15]. The quasi-static characteristics of the PAM are modeled followed by the dynamic characteristics through spectral analysis [16]. A new approach to model

the hysteresis of a basic antagonistic manipulator joint constructed

by a pair of Festo uidic muscles is present [17].

While lot of work has been done to analytically model the pneumatic muscles, the accurate prediction of their dynamic behavior

could not be achieved. These analytical models still have limitations in predicting on behavior of the PAM [18]. This is due to lake

of knowledge of PAM behavior in the light of its conical ends, friction between the inner tube and outer sheath, valves and uid ow

characteristics and large hysteresis. It is evident from the discussion in the preceding section that the conventional tools cannot

fully comprehend the non-linear and time dependent muscle characteristics. Therefore, the articial intelligence-based modeling

identication methods are introduced and quantiable work has

been done in this direction. Ahn and Anh applied a Modied

Genetic Algorithm (MGA) for optimizing parameters of a linear

auto-regressive with exogenous (ARX) model of the PAM manipulator, which can be modied online with an adaptive self-tuning

control algorithm. Through experimental investigation, the proposed MGA-based identication algorithm achieves excellent performance in comparison with conventional SGA and LMS methods

[19]. However, the work has been done for constant loading it cannot be used for force control applications of PMA. A neural network

ARX (NNARX) model has been applied to non-linear modeling and

identication of the PAM manipulator using a new INCBP algorithm [1921]. The parametric values of the ARX model have been

optimized using modied GA (MGA). The MSE of this model has

been reported as 0.02616 rad. Incremental back propagation algorithm used to train the NN to further reduce MSE of the model as

0.0035 radians. Prashant proposed a PAM modeling method using

modied fuzzy inference mechanism. To tune the parameters of

fuzzy model three approaches namely, Gradient Descent (GD)

method, Genetic Algorithm (GA) and Modied Genetic Algorithm

(MGA) are used. MGA based fuzzy model was found to be more

accurate [22]. A novel implementation of a SOFC is proposed for

the control of a single PAM. In order to assess the advantage of

the intelligent adaptive control system, a comparison of the performance of three types of nonparametric control algorithms (PD, FFC

and SOFC) is also presented [23].

Summarizing the above discussion, most of the research on

PAM modeling has been done in no-load load or constant conditions, neglecting loads, especially the change in loads. However,

in this paper, the PAM will be used for ankle rehabilitation robot

application, the loads cannot be taken as constant, moreover the

load may change rapidly sometimes. And also, to obtain more

accuracy control performance in rehabilitation robot eld, the

prediction accuracy from the previous models also needs to be

improved.

Articial neural networks can effectively model systems, which

possess non-linearity and uncertainties [24]. In order to address

articial neural network to solve the PAMs dynamic modeling

problems. To get greater modeling accuracy, the parameters of

the ANN model are optimized by three different approaches,

namely, Back Propagation (BP) algorithm, Genetic Algorithm (GA)

approach and hybrid approach combing with BP algorithm and

Modied Genetic Algorithm (MGA). The results obtained from

the three approaches are analyzed and compared in terms of mean

square error (MSE) and maximum deviation of prediction pressure

errors.

PAMs converts pneumatic energy into mechanical form by

transferring the pressure applied on the inner surface of its tube

into the shortening action. The relationship between pressure (P),

length (L) and force (F) can be written as shown below based on

the principle of virtual work [14]:

2

where k L=L0 , and L0, D0 are the initial length and the diameter of

the tube respectively, h is the initial pitch angle of the braid.

However, since the tube shape is not perfectly cylindrical when

pressurized and large hysteresis is present in PAM, above models

cannot be used in their present form, instead improved model has

been built to compensate these variations. However, the model

parameters are difcult to obtain because of the inuence of uncertain factors, such as time-variety, nonlinearity and environment.

In order to construct a neural network based model of PAM,

training data is required to be obtained. The experimental set up

used for this purpose shown in Fig. 1.

Tests are conducted on a single PAM which is placed in a rigid

hanger as shown in Fig. 1(a). Linear position sensor is positioned

parallel to the PAM to record instantaneous length of PAM. A

FUTEK load cell is connected to the PAM and used to measure

the force dynamically.

Pneumatic muscle is inated by connecting it to the pressure

supply from a compressor. The supply pressure was xed at

2 bar and two Isonic pressure regulating valves are used to control

pressure inside the PAM. These valves are capable to provide a

switching frequency of 10 ms and are used to ll, leave inated

and empty the PAM actuator.

As shown in Fig. 1(b), a dSPACE (DS1104) data processing system is used to provide interface to a PC allowing MATLAB and

Simulink programs to be used. The dSPACE has a number of

Input/Output (I/O) capabilities including serial, analogue, and digital, which are used to read data from various sensors and generator control signals. The PAM is controlled by compiling a Simulink

model and downloading it to the DS1104 through the I/O interface.

The dSPACE is connected to PC through RS-232 serial port.

Under different loads and different pressures, the experimental

data are received through serial port from various sensors. The

actual behaviors of the PAM obtained from the experiment setup

is shown in Figs. 2 and 3. Results from the experiments (Fig. 2)

show that the characteristic between length and pressure of PMA

is non-linear. The variable external loading on the PAM also affects

the characteristic considerably. Moreover, from Fig. 3, the plot is

some of different while inating or deating the PAM and a lager

hysteresis exists.

ANN is usually used to model complex relationships between

inputs and outputs or to nd patterns in data. Therefore, in this

paper, a multilayered feed forward ANN is being proposed to

model PAM.

126

Fig. 1. Experiment setup for a PAM using in an ankle rehabilitation robot. (a) Experiment setup for single PAM. (b) Overall structure of the system.

Through the analysis of Section 2, the purpose of modeling is to

nd out a precise relationship among the parameters of length,

force and pressure. However, from Figs. 2 and 3, we nd that the

change in load and the change in length may well inuence the

relationship. The ANN model developed for PAM modeling in the

present work has four input variables, which are instantaneous

values of length, change in length, load and change in load. The

model has a single hidden layer containing ve neurons; the number of neurons in the layer is roughly determined by experience

formula and then it is determined to ve by the method of trial

and error. A hyperbolic tangent sigmoid transfer function is

selected to best emulate the non-linear behavior of the PAM in hidden layer. Linear transfer function is used for the output layer as a

usual practice.

The detailed architecture of the ANN is shown in Fig. 4 wherein

x1, x2, x3, x4 are inputs, namely, length, change in length, load and

Fig. 2. Extension length of PAM when inating.

2

weight from hidden neuron i to output neuron k. Bias weights

1

are shown by bi

(100 N).

127

Table 1

Whole structured parameter variables of the ANN model.

w11

w12

w13

w14

w21

w22

w23

w24

w31

w32

w33

w34

w41

w42

w43

1

w51

1

w52

1

w53

1

w53

1

w54

1

b1

1

b2

1

b3

1

b4

1

b5

2

w1

2

w2

2

w3

2

w4

2

b1

expressed in term of these weights.

According to the ANN model shown in Fig. 4, there are 31

parameter variables required to be optimized. All the variables

are structured and listed in Table 1. For comparison, in the

research, three training approaches of the ANN model, namely,

BP, GA and hybrid approach will be developed as discussed in

the following section.

4. Hybrid approach

Optimum parameters of ANN using efcient optimization algorithms, is the key to achieve higher accurate modeling of PAM. As

mentioned in the previous section, 31 variables of ANN are

required to be optimized. There are numerous algorithms available

for training ANN models such as Reinforced, Hebbian, Gradient

Descent (GD) and Evolutionary Algorithm (EA). GD method is a

widely used method for training ANN model [25]. Back

Propagation (BP) algorithm, a type of GD method, is the most

widely used approach for training ANN model. Due to simplicity,

BP is a common method of training articial neural network, however, it has some limitations, such as slow and local minimum.

Because of inherent limitations of BP algorithm, it and its

improved BP algorithms, such as additional momentum method,

adaptive learning rate [26] are hard to resolve the problems of local

optimal and sensitivity to initial values completely.

Genetic Algorithm (GA) belongs to the larger class of evolutionary algorithm, which generates solutions to optimization problems

using techniques inspired by natural evolution, such as mutation,

selection and crossover. In theory, GA can gain global optimum

solution in a certain condition, which is widely used in many areas

for its favorable global searching. However, it also has some shortcomings such as premature and slow convergence.

Therefore in this paper, the modied genetic algorithm are proposed to resolve the problems. We have proposed two modications in conventional GA, rst, an elitism and worst eliminated

selection method has been used to ensure that the best solution

does not become extinct in the process of evolution. Second,

self-adjusting mutation and crossover rate method are used.

However, the weak local search capabilities cannot also be solved.

Therefore a hybrid approach is proposed. First, a Modied Genetic

Algorithm (MGA) is proposed to improve the convergence speed

and avoid premature solution. Second, in view of the high capability of BP algorithm in local search and GA in global search, a hybrid

approach combing with BP algorithm and MGA is developed and

proposed. MGA is used to search a global solution initially and

BP algorithm is used to ne tune the solution afterwards.

The tness function (F) of MGA is dened as:

F 1=1 T

output and actual output in Eq. (3).

The quadratic sum of the difference (T) between reference output and actual output is described rstly, and it is written as:

T

T

X

X

2

2

ek

yd k ya k

k1

k1

reference output values, obtained from the experiment; ya(k) is the

w44

ANN model actual output values as shown by Eq. (4), it can be written as:

ya f 2

5

X

i1

2

wi

f1

4

X

1

wij

xj

1

bi

!!

!

2

j1

is the number of the input neurons; f 1 is the activation function of

hidden neuron; f 2 is the activation function of output neuron. The

objective of training the ANN model is to minimize the difference

between reference output and actual output.

Thirty-one variables listed in Table 1 are grouped in a

chromosome-like structure, which in turn is interpreted as the

ANN model. The chromosome-like individual is coded using real

number string to describe 31 variables of the ANN model. 100 individual solutions are randomly generated to form an initial population. Each variable in the individual solution is assigned for short

type and the tness accuracy of the order is 10e4, and the maximum tness value is 0.9999, which is the ttest solution.

There are two main steps of the hybrid approach. First, search

the optimal weights and bias weights values using the MGA.

Then, switch to the BP algorithm to ne tune the weights, when

some transition conditions are satised. The essence of the hybrid

approach is that the initial weights and bias weights values of BP

algorithm are provided by MGAs solution. The BP algorithm can

nd solution in global optimal path. The approach can make good

use of both merits of the MGA, namely, global searching capability

and BP algorithm namely, local searching capability.

The rough solution is searched initially using MGA and ne

tuned using the BP algorithm next. This process is repeated until

a termination condition has reached. The termination conditions

are, (1) Fixed number (NMax) of iterations has reached; (2) The ne

tuned solution has reached the optimum solution (MSEmin).

Various steps used in the whole hybrid approach are explained

as below in detail.

Step 1. Select the termination conditions. In the present, the

approach will switch to BP algorithm if the tness value reaches

0.9999 or the number of epochs is GMax.

Step 2. Initialize a population of 100 individual solutions

randomly.

Step 3. Append the maximum tness (Max (gen 1)) solution

obtained from the preceding iteration into the present generation. Calculate the tness value of each solution and sort the

solutions ascending by tness value. Then nd the maximum

tness (Max (gen)) from present generation. Compare it with

the termination conditions. Continue if the tness is less than

0.9999 and the number of epochs is less than GMax, then gen = gen + 1; go to Step7 otherwise.

Step 4. Save a copy of the ttest solution (Max (gen)) separately.

Eliminate the worst 20 percent individual solutions and ll in

by the equal numbers of random data.

Step 5. Apply crossover and mutation operations to form a new

generation. The crossover rate and mutation rate are changed

dynamically. The top 20% epochs, the crossover rate is 0.9 and

mutation rate is 0.04. The middle 40 percent epochs, the crossover rate is 0.85 and mutation rate is 0.08. The nal 40% epochs,

the crossover rate is 0.8 and mutation rate is 0.12.

Step 6. Return to Step 3.

Step 7. Switch into the BP algorithm with adaptive learning rate.

128

Compare it with the termination criterion. Continue if the

MSE (N) is more than MSEmin and the number of iterations is

less than Maximum iterations (NMax); terminate otherwise.

Step 9. Forward propagation and back propagation.

Step 10. Update the weights and bias weights of ANN to reduce

the difference between actual output and reference output.

Step 11. Return to Step 7.

In order to get better understanding of the steps of the hybrid

approach, the process of the hybrid approach is displayed as in

Fig. 5.

5. Experimental result and discussion

Experiments are carried out to validate the proposed ANN

model and evaluate the performance of the BP, GA and hybrid

approaches. The experimental setup as shown in Fig. 1(b) is located

at he mechanic laboratory, university of Auckland, New Zealand.

Because the PAM is used in an ankle robot ultimately to realize

range of motion and strength training treatments for ankle injuries.

Therefore, the experimental setup of the PAM was moved through

a sinusoid motion trajectory. The frequency of the motion is 0.2 Hz.

The amplitude of the motion is 0.1 m. The total of data are 1200,

which obtained from sensors are divided equally into three parts;

one part is used for training the ANN model and the remaining

parts are used for validation and testing.

The ANN for PAM modeling has been discussed in Section 3. To

provide accuracy model of PAM, three approaches, namely, the BP,

the GA and the hybrid approach are used to train the ANN model

using the training experiment data respectively.

Firstly, the adaptive learning rate BP algorithm is used to train

the ANN model. After 30,000 iterations, results from the training

data show that the MSE to predict pressure inside of the PAM is

found to be 0.0020 bars and the maximum deviation is 11.30% as

shown in Fig. 6. However, from the discussion provided in

Section, we know the error in pressure has an import inuence

on the PAM characteristic and then may affect the control performance of PAM. To investigate whether the BP algorithm has converged at a local optimal solution and there exists a better

solution, the GA approach is used to train the ANN model with

the same training data as BP algorithm. The initial population of

GA is 100. The crossover rate of GA is 0.85 and mutation rate of

GA is 0.08. After around 100 epochs, the MSE and maximum deviation are 0.0011% and 5.96% respectively as shown in Fig. 6. Finally,

the hybrid approach is used to train the ANN model, after only 40

epochs of MGA and 3000 iterations of BP discussed in Section 4, the

MSE and maximum deviation are only 4.9725e05 bar and 2.5%.

129

Fig. 6. Prediction errors in pressure (Training Data), using three training approaches.

and hybrid approach are listed in Tables 24. According to these

values, we can obtain the three trained ANN models of the PAM.

the three trained ANN models. Results from the test data of the

three trained ANN models are shown in Fig. 7. The curves of the

Table 2

Variables values of trained ANN model using BP algorithm.

Variables

Values

Variables

Values

Variables

Values

Variables

Values

w12

8.9996

w33

2.2143

w54

18.0255

w4

0.2121

w11

1.8865

w32

30.2450

w53

1.3906

w3

0.5498

w13

0.6904

w14

94.4721

w34

33.3589

b1

2.1277

w41

9.0617

w5

0.0683

w21

0.8834

w42

15.7800

b2

0.0984

w22

35.2783

w43

3.8057

w23

1.1611

w44

7.8467

b3

1.9565

w24

58.2131

w51

9.1710

b4

4.0210

b5

0.8115

w31

6.7941

w52

26.0014

w2

0.6225

w1

0.3112

b1

1.2638

Table 3

Variables values of trained ANN model using GA approach.

Variables

Values

Variables

Values

Variables

Values

w12

1.2597

w41

1.3205

w11

0.9991

w34

1.5959

1

b3

0.9390

w13

0.6889

w42

0.7246

b4

1.2309

w14

1.7253

w43

0.8699

b5

1.7410

w21

0.1098

w44

1.0578

w2

1.1059

w1

0.6087

w22

0.5190

w23

0.7927

w51

0.9073

w3

0.0900

w24

0.6427

w52

1.4820

w31

0.5095

w53

0.8407

w4

0.8914

w5

1.0290

w24

0.8425

w53

1.1139

w5

0.0118

w32

1.7005

w54

0.3324

b1

0.0004

b1

0.9429

b2

0.3191

w33

0.8234

w33

1.4898

1

Table 4

Variables values of trained ANN model using hybrid approach.

Variables

Values

Variables

Values

Variables

Values

w12

0.2627

w41

1.0881

w11

0.0586

w34

1.3249

1

b3

0.0096

w13

1.6091

w42

0.2467

b4

0.0338

w14

0.0518

w43

0.9576

b5

1.2911

w21

1.1907

w44

0.1673

w2

0.0152

w1

1.1343

w22

0.3147

w23

1.3745

w51

1.0797

w52

0.9960

w3

0.0713

w4

1.0319

w31

0.0001

w32

0.0000

w54

0.8296

b1

1.2710

b1

1.2419

b2

1.3957

130

approach are compared with the curve of reference data (experimental data) in Fig. 7. It can be seen that the GA approach has

achieved better performance than the BP algorithm, and hybrid

approach shows the best performance.

three trained ANN model outputs and the reference data. The deviations of three ANN models with reference data are shown in Fig. 8.

It can be seen that the MSE is 0.0026 bars and the maximum deviation is 13.64%, using BP algorithm which are 0.0010 bars and

6.36% using GA approach.

Fig. 8. Prediction errors in pressure (Test Data), using three training approaches.

approach. The MSE is 9.3398e5, which is one tenth of the GA

approach. The maximum deviation is 3.28%, which is only half of

the GA approach. Clearly, hybrid approach based ANN model

shows improved performance compared to other approaches. The

proposed approach shows improvement over a similar work by

Chang and Lilly that 23,340 iterations were required to achieve a

MSE of 0.0011 [27]. Three strategies were introduced in the MGA

based NARX fuzzy model, and these strategies can ensure a global

optimal solution, but they do not enhance the local search capabilities of GA. Their proposed best approach can provide a MD of 10%

[28]. It is clear that the modeling performance for PAM using ANN

model trained by hybrid approach is much better than these three

strategies.

6. Conclusion

This paper proposed an articial neural network approach to

model the non-linear and time variant behavior of PAM. In order

to train the parameters of the ANN model, BP algorithm, GA and

hybrid approach were developed. Research showed that the three

trained ANN models were able to represent the relationship

between force, length, and pressure of the PAM to certain degree

of accuracy. The results obtained from the BP algorithm, the GA

approach and the hybrid approach were analyzed in terms of their

MSE, maximum deviation and convergence rate. The GA approach

was found to be more accurate than the BP algorithm, and showed

faster convergence rate. The hybrid approach showed the best

preference among the three approaches.

[5]

[6]

[7]

[8]

[9]

[10]

[11]

[12]

[13]

[14]

[15]

[16]

[17]

[18]

Acknowledgment

[19]

the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51205296).

[20]

[21]

Supplementary data associated with this article can be found, in

the online version, at http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mechatronics.

2015.04.021.

[22]

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