Special Issue: “Soft Actuators”

Journal: Actuators
Deadline: closed (16 December 2013)

The use of soft/compliant elements is one of the oldest ways to store energy and was one of the few available to our ancestors. In ancient history they used it for their catapults and clocks and Da Vinci used his knowledge on springs to design one of the first automata driven by elastic energy. On the other hand, the start of automation/robotics was characterized with actuators that had to be as stiff as possible. For the future generation of robots however the advantages of stiff actuators like precision trajectory tracking, become less important compared to other requirements like energy efficiency, safety and force accuracy. Although recently several platforms using soft actuators like the robotic co-worker Baxter, BioRob arm, have been introduced on the market, the field of soft actuators faces still a number of fundamental scientific challenges and the optimal exploitation of their properties in applications need to be better understood. Therefore this special issue targets high quality publications spanning the following topics:

  • design of novel soft actuators
  • force, motion and stiffness control
  • safety issues in physical human-robot interaction
  • energy efficiency
  • explosive motions like throwing, kicking,..
  • applications with strong focus on role on soft actuator
  • control and actuation of continuum and/or large DOF bodies

Special Issue Editors:
Prof. Dr. Bram Vanderborght (Department of Mechanical Engineering, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium)
Prof. Dr. Fumiya Iida (Institute of Robotics and Intelligent Systems, ETH Zürich, Switzerland)
Prof. Dr. Cecilia Laschi (The BioRobotics Institute, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna Piazza, Italy)


Soft Robotics: Trends, Applications and Challenges 

The book with the proceedings of the Soft Robotics Week published by Springer





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