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National Yunlin University

of Science & Technology

Department  of 

Rocker-type W-shaped
Track Robot
China university of Mining and
Mechanical and Electrical

LI Yun-wang, GE Shi-rong,
ZHU Hua, FANG Hai-feng
• rocker-type track robot
• suspension configurations
• W-shaped track suspension
• obstacles-surmounting
• good passive adaptability to rough
unstructured terrain environments
• strong obstacles-surmounting
• applied to the planet surface
exploration rovers successfully
• This type of mobile system is suitable
for the natural undulating terrain,
but it is difficult to overcome the
artificial structured terrain, such as
steps, successive stairs and
• If the barrier was blocked between
two landing legs of the rocker
suspension, the robot could not

• The ditches width which the robot
could cross was restricted by the
diameter of the wheels.

• The performance of stair-climbing was
not well.
• Mechanism R0 was the schematic
diagram of a typical rocker-type
suspension which was used in the
mobile platform

• The mechanisms R1 and R2 not only
retained the good adaptability of
mechanism R0 to adapt to the
uneven terrain, but also avoided the
situation that the landing legs in
mechanism R0 would be blocked by
obstacles, and improved the
obstacles-surmounting capabilities,
such as steps-climbing and ditches-
crossing. Especially the mechanism
R2 could be variable to conquer
multiform obstacles, if the angle
could be changed, but it required
more power and complex structure.
• The mechanisms R3 and R4 would be
the fixed W type tracks, if the angle
was a constant.Each W-shaped track
suspension only required one DC
motor to drive the tracks and could be
implemented easily. The mechanisms
R3 and R4 had good performance of
the regular landform
climbing. The mechanism R3 and R4

composed of two independent triangle

tracks. And the transmission device was
set to ensure the two tracks running
synchronously. The rear main track ofthe
mechanism R4 was longer than the front
• The rocker type W-shaped track
robot mobile platform was shown in
Fig. 4. The platform was comprised
of two R4 W-shaped track
suspensions, a differential
mechanism and a main body
Rough terrain-crossing
• When the robot driving on the rough
terrain, the W-shaped track
suspensions on both sides of the
main body swung to adapt to the
terrain and the differential
mechanism kept the main body at
an average angle between the two
track suspensions.

• The step-climbing process of the
robot mobile platform was shown in
Fig. 6. This process included two
stages: the front tracks climbing
over the nosing of the step and the
rear tracks climbing over the
nosing .
Successive stairs-
• Compared with the step-climbing
process, the main difference was that
the front and rear tracks maybe
climbed two nosings simultaneously.
The robot could climb up the stairs,
the riser height of which was 150mm
and the going of which was 280mm
Step-climbing down
• If the ditch was deep enough, the
robot’s travel
 mechanism wouldn’t contact with
the bottom of the ditch , during the
ditch-crossing. The process of ditch-
crossing is shown in Fig. 11. The
maximum theoretical width of the
ditch was l determined by the
geometric dimension of the robot’s
• The capabilities analysis and
prototype test results indicated that
the rocker-type W-shaped track
mobile platform had excellent
passive adaptability to
unstructured terrain environments
and strong obstacles-surmounting