Variable Stiffness Actuators: Review on Design and Components

Sebastian Wolf, Giorgio Grioli, O. Eiberger, W. Friedl, Markus Grebenstein, H. Hoppner, Etienne Burdet, Darwin Caldwell, Raffaella Carloni, Manuel Catalano, Dirk Lefeber, Stefano Stramigioli, Nikolas Tsagarakis, Michael Van Damme, Ronald Van Ham, Bram Vanderborght, Ludo V. Visser, Antonio Bicchi, Alin Albu-Schäffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

176 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Variable Stiffness Actuators (VSA) are complex
mechatronic devices, which are developed to build passively
compliant, robust, and dexterous robots. Numerous different
hardware designs have been developed in the past two decades
to address various demands on their functionality. This review
paper gives a guide to the design process from the analysis
of the desired tasks identifying the relevant attributes and
their influence on the selection of different components such as
motors, sensors, and springs. The influence on the performance
of different principles to generate the passive compliance and the
variation of the stiffness are investigated. Furthermore, the design
contradictions during the engineering process are explained in
order to find the best suiting solution for the given purpose. With
this in mind the topics of output power, potential energy capacity,
stiffness range, efficiency, and accuracy are discussed. Finally the
dependencies of control, models, sensor setup, and sensor quality
are addressed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2418-2430
JournalIEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics
Volume21
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016

Keywords

  • soft robotics
  • physical Human-Robot Interaction
  • Variable Impedance Actuators
  • Variable Stifness Actuators

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Variable Stiffness Actuators: Review on Design and Components'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this