Development of Inchworm Type Pipe Inspection Robot using Extension Type Flexible Pneumatic Actuators

  • K. Kusunose Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan
  • T. Akagi Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan
  • S. Dohta Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan
  • W. Kobayashi Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan
  • T. Shinohara Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan
  • Y. Hane Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan
  • K. Hayashi Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan
  • M. Aliff Malaysian Institute of Industrial Technology, Universiti Kuala Lumpur, Persiaran Sinaran Ilmu, Bandar Seri Alam, 81750 Johor, Malaysia
Keywords: extension type flexible pneumatic actuator, pipe inspection robot, sliding/bending mechanism, wriggling type propulsion mechanism, cilia type propulsion mechanism

Abstract

In the case of damp and wet pipes, pipe inspection robots using pneumatic actuators offer advantages such as no electrical leakage and short circuit. In the previous study, a robot consisting of sliding/bending mechanisms using parallel arranged three extension type flexible pneumatic actuators and two holding mechanisms was successfully developed. In order to use the robot in thinner pipe, a novel and simpler propulsion mechanism utilising the difference of frictional force moving forward and backward are proposed and tested in this work. There are two mechanisms, which are “wriggling type” and “cilia type”. The “wriggling type” mechanism moves forward by wriggling its body while the “cilia type” mechanism moves by using plate type cilia that covered on the mechanism. Both mechanisms have been tested in the pipeline. As a result, it can be confirmed that the cilia type propulsion mechanism can travel in the pipe with accumulated water. It can be found that the mechanism can easily travel through corners while twisting its body by giving bending motion toward any direction.

Author Biographies

T. Akagi, Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan

Tetsuya Akagi is currently a professor of Department of Intelligent Mechanical Engineering, Okayama University of Science, Japan. He received his doctor degree in Engineering from Okayama University of Science in 1998. He started at Tsuyama National College of Technology, Japan as a research associate on 1998. Then, he joined Okayama University of Science as a lecturer from 2005. He received Young Scientists' Prize from Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Techno-logy (MEXT) in Japan. His research interests include mechatronics and robotics; especially wearable control systems using microcomputers and wearable control devices such as flexible pneumatic actuator, soft sensor and wearable control valve.

S. Dohta, Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan

Shujiro Dohta is currently a specially appointed professor of Department of Intelligent Mechanical Engineering, Okayama University of Science, Japan. He is also an emeritus professor of Okayama University of Science.

He joined Okayama University of Science as a research associate on 1974. Then, he became an Exchange Faculty of Wright State University, U.S.A. from 1984 to 1985. He received his doctor degree in Engineering from Kobe University in 1990. His major in mechatronics is focusing on the development of robotics, wearable devices for rehabilitation purpose.

Prof. Shujiro Dohta is currently a member of The Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers (JSME), The Society of Instrument and Control Engineers (SICE), The Robotics Society of Japan (RSJ), and The Japan Fluid Power System Society (JFPS).

W. Kobayashi, Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan

Wataru Kobayashi is currently a lecturer of Department of Intelligent Mechanical Engineering, Okayama University of Science, Japan. He received his doctor degree in Engineering from Shibaura Institute of Technology in 2015. His research interests are robust control theory and aqua drive system; especially rehabilitation and life support systems.

He is a member of The Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers, The Society of Instrument and Control Engineers, The Japan Fluid Power System Society, and The Society of Life Support Engineering.

T. Shinohara, Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan

Takashi Shinohara is currently a lecturer of Learning Support Center in Okayama University of Science, Japan. He received his doctor degree in Engineering from Okayama University of Science in 2007. His research interests are pneumatic actuator and flexible sensor; especially His major in soft pneumatic actuator and is focusing on the development of robotics, wearable devices for rehabilitation.

Y. Hane, Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan

Yusuke Hane, graduate student, studies in Okayama University of Science since 2019. His research topics are focused on development of a portable type home rehabilitation device using extension type flexible pneumatic cylinders.

K. Hayashi, Okayama university of science, 1-1, Ridai-cho, Kita-ku, Okayama, 700-0005, Japan

Koutaro Hayashi, graduate student, studies in Okayama University of Science since 2019. His research topics are focused on improvement of pipe holding mechanism for pipe inspection robot using extension type flexible pneumatic cylinders.

M. Aliff, Malaysian Institute of Industrial Technology, Universiti Kuala Lumpur, Persiaran Sinaran Ilmu, Bandar Seri Alam, 81750 Johor, Malaysia

Mohd Aliff is currently a senior lecturer of Instrumentation and Control Engineering Section, Malaysian Institute of Industrial Technology, Universiti Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He received his doctor degree in Engineering from Okayama University of Science in 2016. His research backgrounds are in mechatronics and robotics; particularly in rehabilitation device, intelligent robot and flexible pneumatic actuator.

He is a member of Board of Engineers Malaysia and Malaysia Board of Technologists.

Published
2020-08-06
How to Cite
Kusunose, K., Akagi, T., Dohta, S., Kobayashi, W., Shinohara, T., Hane, Y., Hayashi, K., & Aliff, M. (2020). Development of Inchworm Type Pipe Inspection Robot using Extension Type Flexible Pneumatic Actuators. International Journal of Automotive and Mechanical Engineering, 17(2), 8019-8028. https://doi.org/10.15282/ijame.17.2.2020.20.0601
Section
Articles