New suction cup

Components update and redesign of the new end effector for ROMERIN--

Work done by: Javier Valero

The principal aim is to improve the general structure of the suction cup as much as to update the electronics components. In this way, a more compact and robust design of the end effector with less error probability will be achieved.

Even though the previous design was functional, it had big errors that hampered on some occasions the usability of the suction cup. In some tests, for example, the silicone crown of the cups tended to separate from the plate, making necessary to relocate it by hand. The electronic design wasn’t robust, as it was formed by commercial sensor PCBs which were connected by copper wires and stuck to the plate with dry silicone.

The first task carried out was to improve the electronics design of the suction cup achieving a crown form PCB with all its sensors integrated and working at the same time harmoniously.

The next step of this redesign, once it was validated that the PCB worked correctly, was to introduce the ESC (Electronic Speed Controller) which controls the brushless motor attached to the turbine.

When the electronic redesign was completed, simulations of tensional stacks were made so as to attain a safer structure of the suction cup. Pieces were redesigned and the silicone attach cup was replaced using instead flexible filament (exactly filaflex 82A) printed with double extrusion. With this new method of building the ventose, the attached cup will no longer separate from the plate as they are in fact, the same piece. Finally, tests were made to check the general performance of the new design and as expected, not only the sucker was much safer now but also, the efficiency has also increased, as the new flexible filament tends to seal the contact surface better than the silicone’s one.

After verifying every aspect of the new suction cup, construction tasks to update each sucker of all ROMERIN’s legs have begun.

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