Disposable robotic finger driven pneumatically by flat tubes and a hollow link mechanism

Junya Tanaka, Nobuto Matsuhira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


We propose a robotic finger with an exoskeleton-type structure that bends and extends by the deformation force of flat tubes. Our objective is to realize a disposable robot hand for gripping unsanitary objects. To reduce the cost of disposing of the robotic finger, a commercially available cable carrier chain was used for the exoskeleton component, and the flat tubes used in the pneumatic actuator were prepared by thermal processing of a commercially available tube. The driving joint of the robotic finger consists of a hollow link mechanism and two flat tubes, which are respectively arranged inside the hollow link mechanism and at the joint boundary. The proposed joint structure achieves both smooth drivability and good load-bearing ca-pacity. The developed robotic finger weighs approxi-mately 85 g and generates a fingertip force of approx-imately 4 N when a pressure of 0.25 MPa is applied. Because the developed robotic finger is pneumatically driven, it conforms to the object shape and is compli-ant to external force. Verification of the mechanism demonstrated that the developed robotic finger is use-ful because it was able to grasp six types of assumed objects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)958-976
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Robotics and Mechatronics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Disposable tool
  • Flat tube
  • Hardware de-sign
  • Pneumatic drive
  • Robotic finger

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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