ICRA'09 Paper Abstract


Paper FrB7.4

Xu, Zhe (University of Washington), Deyle, Travis (Georgia Institute of Technology), Kemp, Charlie (Georgia Institute of Technology)

1000 Trials: An Empirically Validated End Effector That Robustly Grasps Objects from the Floor

Scheduled for presentation during the Regular Sessions "Robot Companions and Social Robots in Home Environments" (FrB7), Friday, May 15, 2009, 11:30−11:50, Room: 405

2009 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, May 12 - 17, 2009, Kobe, Japan

This information is tentative and subject to change. Compiled on January 24, 2022

Keywords Domestic Robots, Service Robots


Within this paper, we address the problem of picking up an object sitting on a plane in isolation, as can occur when someone drops an object on the floor - a common problem for motor-impaired individuals. We assume that the robot has the ability to coarsely position itself in front of the object, but otherwise grasps the object with an open-loop strategy that does not vary from object to object.

We present a novel end effector that is capable of robustly picking up a diverse array of everyday handheld objects given these conditions. This straight-forward, inexpensive, nonprehensile end effector combines a compliant finger with a thin planar component with a leading wedge that slides underneath the object. We empirically validated the efficacy of this design through a set of 1096 trials over which we systematically varied the object location, object type, object configuration, and floor characteristics. Our implementation, which we mounted on a iRobot Create, had a success rate of 94.71% on 680 trials, which used 4 floor types with 34 objects of particular relevance to assistive applications in 5 different poses each (4x34x5=680). The robot also had strong performance with objects that would be difficult to grasp using a traditional end effector, such as a dollar bill, a pill, a cloth, a credit card, a coin, keys, and a watch. Prior to this test, we performed 416 trials in order to assess the performance of the gripper with respect to variations in object position.



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