Carnegie Mellon University
Generality and Simple Hands

Matthew T. Mason , Siddhartha Srinivasa, and Andres S. Vazquez
International Symposium of Robotics Research, July, 2009.

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While complex hands seem to offer generality, simple hands are more practical for most robotic and telerobotic manipulation tasks, and will remain so for the foreseeable future. This raises the question: how do generality and simplicity trade off in the design of robot hands? This paper explores the tension between simplicity in hand design and generality in hand function. It raises arguments both for and against simple hands; it considers several familiar examples; and it proposes a concept for a simple hand design with associated strategies for grasping and object localization. The central idea is to use knowledge of stable grasp poses as a cue for object localization. This leads to some novel design criteria, such as a desire to have only a few stable grasp poses. We explore some of the design implications for a bin-picking task, and then examine some experimental results to see how this approach might be applied in an assistive object retrieval task.

robot hands, robot grippers

Associated Center(s) / Consortia: Center for the Foundations of Robotics
Associated Lab(s) / Group(s): Manipulation Lab
Associated Project(s): Simple Hands

Text Reference
Matthew T. Mason , Siddhartha Srinivasa, and Andres S. Vazquez, "Generality and Simple Hands," International Symposium of Robotics Research, July, 2009.

BibTeX Reference
   author = "Matthew T. {Mason } and Siddhartha Srinivasa and Andres S Vazquez",
   title = "Generality and Simple Hands",
   booktitle = "International Symposium of Robotics Research",
   month = "July",
   year = "2009",