Fluid Dynamics Aided Design of an Innovative Micro-Gripper
The increasing miniaturization of more and more systems and products is supporting the necessity to develop and handle micro-objects and micro-assembling tools. However, in comparison to bigger scale systems, micro-scale tasks undergo greater challenges due to the effect of unwanted sticking forces whose relative value may be predominant at the micro-scale. Systems to overcome these limiting factors have to be specifically developed to enable an effective and successful manipulation. In the case of contact micro-grippers, specific additional devices or manipulating strategies are used to assure the success of the release phase. In this context, this paper presents an innovative vacuum micro-gripper with a low-cost and simple automatic releasing device which can effectively overcome the adhesive forces. The paper, after illustrating the working principle of the gripper, discusses the preliminary results of a first computational fluid dynamics model useful to represent the main gripper characteristics and able to support a design procedure.
KeywordsVacuum micro-gripper Fluid dynamic simulations Micro-gripper design
The work has been partially supported by the project: “Cybersort” - 3AQ CNR Regione Lombardia. The authors thank Fabio Colombo for his contribution, during his Master’s thesis development, to the investigation on the presented micro-gripper.
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