Profile sensing with an actuated whisker

Gregory R. Scholz, Christopher D. Rahn

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Obstacle avoidance and object identification are important tasks for robots in unstructured environments. This paper develops an actuated whisker that determines contacted object profiles using a hub load cell. The shape calculation algorithm numerically integrates the elastica equations from the measured hub angle, displacement, forces, and torque until the bending moment vanishes, indicating the contact point. Sweeping the whisker across the object generates a locus of contact points that can be used for object identification. Experimental results demonstrate the ability to identify and differentiate square and curved objects at various orientations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdaptive Structures and Materials Systems
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)0791836258, 9780791836255
StatePublished - 2002

Publication series

NameASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, Proceedings

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanical Engineering


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