Posts Tagged ‘Force-feedback’

1964 – Aluminaut Submersible – Reynolds Submarine Corp. (American)

1964 – Aluminaut Submersible.


Image source: Manned Submersibles, Frank Bushby, 1976.

The Aluminaut is equipped with external dual manipulators which were designed jointly by Reynolds and the General Electric Company, Schenectady, New York and built by General Electric. Each manipulator handles up to 200 pounds at its full nine foot extension, and both are jointly operated by a single hydraulic power package. This equipment is built from hollow sections of aluminum, and weighs only 150 pounds in air. It is driven by a one horsepower induction motor connected directly to a constant volume pump which produces 3,000 psi working pressure. Four-way solenoid control valves are used with rotary piston type actuators. The power package holds about 11 gallons of hydraulic oil. Since the hydraulic unit is pressure compensated, the oil must resist the cumulative effect of the working pressure plus the ambient pressure.


Aluminaut's manipulators represented the most advanced technological achievement of the late sixties. Each arm has six degrees of freedom. Working together they provide a high degree of versatility. When not in use, the manipulators retract and fold back under the bow. (Bushby)






The working position of the operators and the arms.



The GE CAM technology was further deployed in these manipulator arms developed for the research submarine, Aluminaut.

See GE CAMS technology described here.

See other early Underwater Robots here.

1985 – ACEC Mobile Inspection Vehicle – (Belgian)


1985 – ACEC Mobile Inspection Vehicle



The manipulators are master-slave force feed-back and electrically driven.



The ACEC Vehicle for remote inspection and intervention has a minimal footprint when the treads are folded up and the manipulator arms are also folded.



Publication number EP0197020 A1
Publication date Oct 8, 1986
Filing date Mar 7, 1986
Priority date Mar 9, 1985
Inventors Raymond Pinsmaille, Costa Cabral Gaivao Luis Da, Alain Duchene, Dominique Colard
Applicant ACEC, Société Anonyme




See other early Space Teleoperators here.

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1976 – MF3 Manipulator Vehicle – Köhler (German)



Blocher-Motor GmbH & Co. KG, Metzingen, West Germany CMS Technologies, Inc., Ft. Lee, N.J., U.S. Distributor
This device is a remotely controlled, tethered 4-tracked vehicle which is used in the nuclear industry and other hazardous environments. It was initially conceived and developed at the KFA Julich Research Laboratory in West Germany. Its single, light-duty, electric-powered manipulator arm can lift up to 20 kg (44 lb); the heavy-duty arm can lift up to 80 kg (176 lb). Both arms have 6 axes of movement and possess infinitely rotating long openings. Optional 7-axes electric lightweight master-slave arms (single or dual) which can perform extremely delicate operations by means of power feedback can carry 12 kg (26 lb) In a sustained operation or up to 24 kg (53 lb) in a temporary capacity. The MF3 is remote controlled from a portable control desk located up to 100 m (328 ft) from the 408-kg (900 lb) device. The MF3 dimensions are: 2264 x 720 x 400mm (1 x w x h) (89.1 x 28.3 x 15.7 in.); with track adjustment, the length and height are, respectively, 940 and 1080 mm (37.0 and 42.5 in.). It can climb stairs with a gradient of up to 45 degrees, turn on a 1200 mm (47.2 in.) radius, and can surmount 600 mm (23.6 in.) high obstacles, and traverse 1 m (3 ft) wide chasms (gaps). Its maximum speed is 30 m/min (99 ft/min), optional accessories are video cameras, TV monitor at the control desk, headlights, noise transmission system, X-ray unit with mounting arm, and alternate grippers. Power (220V, 50 Hz) and communications are made through an umbilical cord (cable). On-board electrical tools are powered through on-board sockets. An alternate model can operate with four on-board 12V batteries.











A mobile base with optional manipulator arms. The EMSM 2 arms by the same developers are shown above.





mf3-emsm2 - Copy-x640


Above and below – Current MF3 offerings by KHG.


See other early Teleoperators and Industrial Robots here.

1970-2 – “Virgule” Remote-Controlled Manipulator – Jean Vertut (French)


1970-2 – "Virgule" Remote-Controlled Manipulator.


Virgule being demonstrated at an exhibition.

See 1:14 and 4:16 into video clip.


The MA22 arm (slave unit shown) was very innovative at the time. The motors counterbalance the rest of the arm. It was replaced in 1975 by the MA23 which is still highly successful today.



The Virgule was an interesting machine. It had (1) four self-contained propulation and steering wheels with special tread-pattern for stair-climbing. (2) Extended front wheel (both extend to give stability). (3) Retractable from wheel (both retract to allow passage through a narrow door). The MA-22 manipulator arms (5) use a cable and ribbon design. There is feedback between the master and slave.




New MA 23 master-slave manipulators with servo control and force feedback. Their application in routine work and in scheduled and exceptional operations. The MA 22 system, based on the Virgule device, led to the development of a new technology which combines high reliability with excellent performance, very small electronics and high-torque d.c. motors. The second generation, MA 23, is characterized by a substantially improved mechanism, enabling maximum advantage to be derived from the servo control and making it possible to reproduce, at unlimited distance and with very high slave strength, the dexterity displaced by light master-slave manipulators on the operator side. The authors describe the equipment and indicate the various possibilites for its use in facilities. Long-term development and testing is also being directed towards under-water operation and industrial automatic manipulation. (Source)


 Jean Vertut (1929-1985)

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1958 – Mobile Remote Servo-manipulator – Ray Goertz et al (American)

Mobile Remote Servo-manipulator.

Caption: Robot Demonstrations Of The Atomic Age: Many onlookers – including schoolboys were thrilled by the robot "hands" – dealings with a variety of tasks on one of the stands at the Geneva Atomic Exhibition. The "almost human hands" are used in dealing with radio-active materials behind protective walls and are controlled from a distance with the aid of thick glass windows or with the medium of TV. Photo shows This American made slave robot is designed for the handling of radio-active materials 1/4 and is seen at the Geneva Exhibition. Photo is dated 09-09- 1958.


In use at Argonne National Laboratories, located outside Chicago, Illinois, USA.

KSB45177 - Copy-x640

A remote control manipulator being demon

Slave unit.

A remote control manipulator being demon

Slave unit in the foreground; master unit in the background.

A remote control manipulator being demon

Source: Above 3 images from Getty.

Publication number    US2978118 A
Publication date    Apr 4, 1961
Filing date    Nov 3, 1959
Inventors    Raymond C Goertz, John H Grimson, Frank A Kohut
Original Assignee    Raymond C Goertz, John H Grimson, Frank A Kohut

Publication number    US3018980 A
Publication date    Jan 30, 1962
Filing date    Nov 3, 1959
Inventors    Downers Grove, Goertz Raymond C, Lindberg John F
Original Assignee    Downers Grove, Goertz Raymond C, Lindberg John F

This invention relates to a remote-control manipulator in which slave and master units are electrically interconnected. More specifically, the invention relates to such a manipulator in which two slave units are mounted side by side on a mobile vehicle.
Goertz et al. Patent 2,846,084, dated August 5, 1958, discloses and claims a manipulator having master and slave units electrically connected with one another. 'With such a manipulator the master and slave units can be extensively separated from one another, and the slave unit can be completely sealed in an enclosure.
The present manipulator is an improvement of that of the above Goertz et al. patent in that two slave units as well as two master units are mounted side by side to take advantage of the two hands of the human operator and the two slave units are mounted on a mobile vehicle so as to reach a maximum amount of space.
One desirable feature of the assembly of two slave units and vehicle is that it takes up a relatively small amount of space so that it may be readily maneuverable and have access to the maximum space. Another desirable feature is that the slave units and vehicle should be readily repairable by another manipulator if operation in a sealed enclosure is indicated.
An object of the present invention is to provide a manipulator unit of compact arrangement and size which enable the unit along with a similar unit and a mobile vehicle carrying the units to occupy a small amount of space.
A further object is to provide a manipulator unit that is so constructed and arranged as to be readily repairable.

Publication number    US2846084 A
Publication date    Aug 5, 1958
Filing date    Jun 21, 1955
Inventors    Goertz Raymond C, Olsen Robert A, Thompson William M
Original Assignee    Goertz Raymond C, Olsen Robert A, Thompson William M

Note: This Remote Manipulator is not MASCOT.

See other early Teleoperators, Exoskeletons and Industrial Robots here.

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