Design of a Holonomic Ball Drive for Mobile Robots

Design of a Holonomic Ball Drive for Mobile Robots

Categories Konferenz (reviewed)
Year 2014
Authors Runge, G.; Borchert, G.; Raatz, A.
Published in 10th IEEE/ASME International Conference on Mechatronic and Embedded Systems and Applications, Senigallia, Ancona, Italy (published on DVD)

Omnidirectional mobile robots offer interesting features for industrial and service applications, in particular, when operating in tight spaces. Compared to car-like nonholonomic vehicles, they provide a higher degree of maneuverability, and often require less complex path planning and control schemes. Three different types of holonomic wheels that enable omnidirectional motion have been proposed in literature: universal, Mecanum, and ball wheel mechanisms. A problem commonly associated with the first two wheel types is that they induce vibrations in the system due to the discontinuous contact points. In this article, a ball wheel mechanism with superior features including slip detection, free-wheel modus and attrition sensing is presented. The first prototype was built using additive manufacturing of polypropylene. The requirements for such a design are discussed. Based on the ball wheel drive presented in this article, a design for an omnidirectional mobile robot platform driven by three redundant ball wheel units is proposed. The velocity kinematic model of this mobile base is also addressed.

ISBN 978-1-4799-2772-2
DOI 10.1109/MESA.2014.6935568