Sunil Belligundu - MS Thesis Abstract

Supervising Professor: Panayiotis S. Shiakolas

Title: Design and prototyping of a mechanical finger for an artificial hand

Artificial hands and fingers have been developed by applying robotic principles for the past two decades, but there has been no finger developed that can be easily removed and replaced. This thesis addresses the development of such a mechanical finger. This finger has three parallel degrees of freedom, and can be quickly and easily removed from and reattached to the hand via a Quick-Connect-Disconnect (QCD) mechanism. The finger design can be divided into four parts--the actuation mechanism, the link design, the transmission mechanism, and the QCD design. A continuously tensioned pulley-belt design is used for the actuation mechanism. The transmission mechanism has been designed to provide a transfer of rotational motion through the QCD mechanism and the rotational motion is converted into linear motion for actuating the belts. A Generation I prototype of the finger is built to study, evaluate and improve the different mechanisms and concepts implemented.

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