The FinGripper has been designed to handle fruit, bulbs or pressure-sensitive food reliably.
The bionic FinGripper is light, flexible and adaptive. It consists of a pneumatic actuator in the form of a bellows and three gripper fingers arranged in a pattern like the tail fin of a fish. The basic structure is made up of two flexible bands which meet at one end to form a triangle. Intermediate stays are connected to the bands at regular intervals by articulated joints.
The flexible design enables the gripper fingers to adapt to the shape of a work piece when pressure is applied laterally.
The proportional pneumatic valve VPPM ensures that the pressure is correct, allowing individual acceleration and pressure ramps to be applied. The variable flow rates provided by these proportional valves allow the cylinder pressures to be adapted to a given production or sorting process. The robotic controller CMXR controls the tripod robotic handling unit.
The device is manufactured using selective laser sintering with successive layers of polyamide powder of a thickness of 0.1 mm being applied and allowed to harden to form a solid component. This reduces the weight acting on the tool carrier by 90% compared with a conventional metal gripper, and helps make the grippers suitable for handling delicate items.
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