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Design and fabrication of PZT-actuated tools for micromanipulation

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In this paper novel tools for micromanipulation are presented. The devices have been purposely designed for integration in small mobile micro-robots, aimed at performing co-operative precision manipulation and assembly tasks. Concerning the actuation, multilayer piezoceramic components were developed and employed. The selected fabrication techniques for the grippers are shape deposition manufacturing of polymer and electro-discharge machining of stainless steel, and different alternatives have been investigated in order to select the optimal design. Several prototypes have been fabricated and preliminary experimental tests have been performed, both regarding the characterization and the grasping capabilities.


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