Automation and Robotics


History of Robotics
 Robotics Application
 Robot anatomy and Work Volume
 Robot Configuration and work Space
 End-effectors: Grippers and Tools
 Robot Actuators and Drive Systems
 Safety Consideration

Who introduced the word robot?


The term robot was first introduced by a Czech
dramatist, Karel Capek in his 1921 play
"Rossum's Universal Robots". He was referring
to a perfect and tireless worker performing
manual labour jobs for human beings.
Isaac Asimov, coined the word robotics as the
science of the study of robots, in his science
fiction stories about robots in 1940s.

Robot term from Webster’s dictionary:- An
automatic device that performs function
ordinarily ascribed to human being
 'Automation' refers to a mode of operation
in which any machine or piece of
equipment is capable of working without
human intervention.

Automation is generally regarded as being
able to be divided into 3 types:

Fixed automation
Flexible automation
Programmable Automation

Fixed automation

Used when the volume of production is very high
and it is, therefore, appropriate to design
specialized equipment to process products at
high rates and low cost
Eg: automobile industry, where highly integrated
transfer line are used to perform machine
operation on engine and transmission

Flexible automation

Most suitable for the mid-volume production
range. Typically consists of a series of
workstation that are interconnected by materialhandling and storage equipment to process
different product configuration at the same time
to control manufacturing system
Eg: Flexible Manufacturing System (FMS),
Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM)

History of Robotics


mid‑ 1 700s

J. de Vaucanson built several human‑sized
mechanical dolls that played music.


The ‑Stanford Arm," a small electrically powered robot
arm, developed at Stanford University.


Development of S.CARA type robot (Selective
Compliance Arm for Robotic Assembly) at Yamanashi
University in Japan for assembly. Several commercial
SCARA robots introduced around 1981

Robot anatomy and Work Volume
Robot anatomy deals with:
 the types and sizes of these joints and
 and other aspects of the manipulator’s
physical construction

What is a joint?

A joint of robot is
similar to a joint in the
human body
Each joint gives the
robot with a degree-offreedom(d.o.f)of motion
In the nearly all cases,
only 1 d.o.f is allowed
to a joint

What is a robot link?

Links are rigid
components that form
a chain connected
together by joints
Each joint has two
links, known as an
input link and an
output link

Types of robot joints

Linear joint
Rotational joint
Twisting joint
Revolving joint

Linear joint
The relative movement
between the input link
and the output link is a
linear sliding motion,
with the axes of the two
links being parallel

Rotational joint
This type provides a
rotational relative
motion of the joints, with
the axis of rotation
perpendicular to the
axes of the input and
output links

Twisting joint
This joint also involves
a rotary motion, but the
axis of rotation is
parallel to the axes of
the two links

Revolving joint
In this types, the axis of
the input link is parallel
to the axis of rotation of
the joint, and the axis of
the output link is
perpendicular to the
axis of rotation

This joint‑link numbering, scheme
is shown below.


Low technology
Medium technology
High technology

Low technology
 Material

handling, using simple assembly
 2 to 4 axes of movement
 Stop at extreme

Medium technology
 Material handling
 4 to 6 axes

High technology
Material handling
 Pick-and-place
 Loading and unloading
 Painting and welding
 6 to 9 axes

Robot Classification Based On
Kinematic Structure
Normally, robot manipulators are classified
according to their arm geometry or kinematic
structure. The majority of these manipulators fall
into one of these four configuration:

Cartesian Type Configuration (PPP)
Cylindrical Type Configuration (RPP)
Spherical Type Configuration (RRP)
SCARA Type Configuration (RRP or PRR)

Cartesian Type Configuration

Cartesian Type Configuration

Manipulator whose first three joints are prismatic are known as a Cartesian
manipulator.. Cartesian manipulator are useful for table‑top assembly
applications and, as gantry robots for transfer of material and cargo

- 3 linear axes
- Easy to visualize
- Rigid structure
- Easy to program off‑line
- Linear axes make for easy mechanical stops
- Can only reach in front of itself
- Requires large floor space for size of work envelop
- Axes hard to seal

Cylindrical Type Configuration

Cylindrical Type Configuration

For cylindrical type manipulator, its first joint is revolute which produces a
rotation about the based, while its second and third joints are prismatic.
- 2 linear axes, 1 rotating axis
- Can reach all around itself
- Reach and height axes rigid
- Rotational axis easy to seal.
- Cannot reach above itself
- Base rotation axis is less rigid than a linear axis
- Linear axes hard to seal
- Will not reach around obstacles
- Horizontal motion is circular

Spherical Type Configuration

Spherical Type Configuration
The first two joints of this type of manipulators
are revolute, while its third Joint is prismatic.
 Advantages:
- 1 linear axis, 2 rotating axes
- Long horizontal reach
 Disadvantages:
- Cannot reach around obstacles
- Generally has short vertical reach

SCARA Type Configuration (RRP
or PRR)

SCARA Type Configuration (RRP
or PRR)

The word SCARA stands for Selective Compliant Articulated Robot for
Assembly. There are two type of SCARA robot configuration: either the first
two joints are revolute with the third joint as prismatic, or the first joint is
revolute with the second and third Joints as prismatic.
- 1 linear axis, 2 rotating axes
- Height axis is rigid
- Large work area floor space
- Can reach around obstacles
- Two ways to reach a point
- Difficult to program off‑line
- Highly complex arm

Robot Actuators and Drive Systems
What is actuator?
The commonly used actuators are:
1. Stepper motors
2. DC servomotors
3. AC servomotors
4. Hydraulic pistons
5. Pneumatic pistons

Electric Drive

Small and medium size robots are usually
powered by electric drives via gear trains using
servomotors and stepper motors.
- Better accuracy & repeatability
- Require less floor space
- More towards precise work such as assembly applications

- Generally not as speedy and powerful as hydraulic robots
- Expensive for large and powerful robots, can become fire hazard

Hydraulic Drive
Larger robots make use of hydraulic
 Advantages:

- more strength‑to‑weight ratio
- can also actuate at a higher speed

- Requires more floor space
- Tendency to oil leakage.

Pneumatic Drive
 For

smaller robots that possess fewer
degrees of freedom (two‑ to fourjoint
 They are limited to pick‑and‑place tasks with
fast cycles.

Direct Drive Robots
 In

1981 a "direct‑ drive robot" was developed at
Carnegle‑Mellon University, USA. Is used electric
motors located at the manipulator joints without the
usual mechanical transmission linkages used on most
 The drive motor is located contiguous to the joint.
 Benefits:

Eliminate backlash and mechanical defiencies
Eliminate the need of a power transmission (thus more
Joint backdrivable (allowing for joint‑space force sensing)

End-effectors: Grippers and Tools
What is gripper? What is tool?
 Mechanical grippers
 Vacuum systems
 Magnetic Pickups
 Tools

Cam‑operated hand
It can easily handle heavy
or bulky objects. It is designed to
hold the object so that its center
of gravity (CG) is kept very closed
to the wrist of hand. The short
distance between the wrist and
the CG minimizes the twisting
tendency of a heavy or bulky

Special hand with modular
This special hand, with
pair of pneumatic
actuators, is one of the
many special hand
designs for industrial
robots. It is suitable for
parts of light weight.

Special hand for glass tubes
This hand is specially
designed for industrial
robots to securely
grasping of relatively
short tubes.

Simple vacuum cup hand
This simple vacuum cup
hand is suitable for
Handling fragile parts
such as cathode ray
tube face plates

Magnetic Pick up
Magnetic handling is
most suitable for parts
of ferrous contents.
Magnets can be
scientifically designed and
made in numerous shapes
and sizes to perform various

Ladling hot materials such as
molten metal is a hot and
hazardous job for which
industrial robots are well suited.
In piston casting permanent mold
die casting and related
applications, the robot can be
programmed to scoop up and
transfer the molten metal from the
pot to the mold, and then do the

Spray gun
Ability of the industrial robot to do
multipass spraying with controlled
velocity fits it for automated
application of primers, paints, and
ceramic or glass frits, as well as
application of masking agents used before
plating. For short or medium‑length
production runs, the industrial robot would
often be a better choice than a special
purpose setup requiring a lengthy
change‑over procedure for each different
part. Also the robot can spray parts with
compound curvatures and multiple

Tool changing
A single industrial robot can
also handle several tools
sequentially, with an
automatic tool‑changing
operation programmed into
the robot's memory. The
tools can be of different
types or sizes, permitting
multiple operations an the
same workpiece

Safety Consideration
 Practice it as soon as starting robotics
 Must be built into robotics system at the
 Do not risk injuries by robots

What Dangers?
Repairing a robot
 Training/programming robot
 Normal operation
 Power supply

What sort of injuries?
Bodily impact
 Pinching-caught in grippers or joints
 Pining human against a structure