Belt-Driven Arm (2018):
The University Rover Challenge rules state the arm should be strong enough to lift 5 kg irregularly shaped objects, and precise enough to type on a keyboard.
The previous year's arms had issues with flexibility and weight distribution, which reduced their lifting capacity as well as precision. I applied concepts I had learned from my time at ARCLAB lab to design our 5 degree of freedom robotic arm. The arm's main large motors are all mounted on the base. The main structure of the arm is carbon fiber cylindrical tubing, aluminum, and delrin. The arm's joints are actuated by steel reinforced nylon belts. The two axes of motion on the end of the arm were actuated by a differential mechanism to further improve motor placement and weight distribution.