Posts Tagged ‘G.E. Man-Mate Industrial Manipulator’

1978 – ARMS 1 – Oceaneering (American)

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1978 – ARMS 1 (Atmospheric Roving Manipulator System)

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As early as 1971, Dr. Norman H. Wood, program engineer for General Electric's Cybernetic Automation & Mechanization Systems Section, described a new underwater manipulator system devised for use on a multi-well submerged platform. GE's activities in manipulators date back to the company's nuclear power development and space projects. It was a development based on the G.E. Model M-2 Manipulator Arm.

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In 1974, Oceaneering International, Inc., of Houston started developing a 3,000 ft. two-man diving bell jointly developed by Perry Oceanographies, General Electric Company and Oceaneering themselves. Called the Atmospheric Roving Manipulator System (ARMS), which would use an advanced capability force-feedback manipulator featuring a seven function master arm inside a manned submersible and a slave working arm outside that provides “feel” to the operator, from the Re-entry & Environmental Systems Div., General Electric Co., Philadelphia. GE reports "With the G.E. underwater force-feedback manipulator, the operator no longer has to rely on the sometimes difficult decision making processes".

G.E. call their system the Diver Equivalent Manipulator System (DEMS), which can be operated from the inside or from the surface. The arm reaches over 5 ft and can handle 65 lb with only 5 lb of operator hand pressure. This manipulator system has six degrees of freedom plus a grip. If the slave holds a 65 pound weight the operator "feels" a smaller, 5 pound weight (DEMS has 13:1 force ratio). By responding to the force feedback, the operator allows the manipulator to comply to external forces.

The bell is a 72" sphere, designed to accommodate two people, with an emergency support capability of up to five days.

The GE arm system has a reach of 1.6 metres, 29.5 kg rated load and operates to a depth of 1829 m.

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Oceaneering International took delivery on the Perry-built, one-atmosphere vehicle ARMS in late 1976 and was first demonstrated in March 1977.

In 1978, ARMS-I, mainly employed for deepwater drill rig support, was in service on the Ben Ocean Lancer drillship in the Gulf of Mexico.
In the 1980's, Oceaneering renamed ARMS and was now called Ocean-Arms Bells.

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GE'S UNDERWATER MANIPULATOR SHIPPED TO OCEANEERING
Having completed final testing, General Electric's underwater force feedback manipulator is ready to be mated with a 3000-ft (914 m) one-atmosphere diving bell being developed by Oceaneering International, Inc. The diving bell, designated Atmospheric Roving Manipulator System (ARMS), will undergo wet tests in early 1977 in Houston.
The master-slave manipulator is sized to handle a 65 lb (29.5 kg) load at full rated speeds, with a stall capacity of 100 lb (45 kg). The 6df slave has 5.5 ft (1.7 m) full extension to the ends of the universal stub fingers. The hand grip provides the seventh motion. The stub fingers are designed for quick interchange with tooling.
As the operator in the bell moves the terminus of the master, the slave located outside the bell follows at a one-to-one ratio in speed and angular displacement. As a force or an object is encountered by the slave, a portion of the torque generated in a joint is fed back to the master to produce a proportional torque in the corresponding master joint.
The hydraulically powered rotary actuators are arranged at each joint to simulate the human arm, with two wrist motions and a forearm rotation mutually orthogonal, an elbow joint and two shoulder motions, elevation and azimuth. The electrically powered master is a small replica of the slave, with a hand grip at its terminus.
The key elements of this system, a product of GE's Re-entry & Environmental Systems Division, are spatial correspondence and force feedback. The accurate and responsive spatial correspondence of the slave motion, or position, to the master provides precise control.
"ARMS' manipulator can start a nut, stab guidewires, turn valve handles or feel a gap, even in poor visibility or current motion," states Norman H. Wood, GE's Underwater Manipulator Program Manager. "It can locate, grasp, and perform tasks with pins, cables or other hardware in zero visibility," he continued, "an almost impossible task for a rate manipulator because it doesn't have a sense of feel."
The underwater force feedback manipulator is based on years of experience gained from GE's MAN-MATES Industrial Manipulators currently in use in forging operations, foundries and manufacturing facilities.

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The "Aluminaut" also employed G.E. force-feedback arms.


From: Phil Nuytten : Source: here.
To: personal_submersibles
Sent: Fri, Nov 18, 2011 4:46 pm
Subject: Re: [PSUBS-MAILIST] Anyone Know Tom Pado or Total Marine Technology?

All: Yup, I know Tom Pado – he used to work for us at Oceaneering International Inc. He and John Fike were the lead pilots on a series of 3,000 foot rated thruster/manipulator bells designed for offshore oil related work – the series was called 'Ocean Arms' and Perry built Arms 1 through 3, We built 'Arms 4' here in B.C. and it's still here – out in the boneyard. The thruster bells were really only a piloted delivery system for the G.E. force-feedback, spatially compliant manipulator arm. (O.I.I. owned all rights to the G.E. arm – the rights were purchased from General Electric – it was used in their 'Man-mate' program.) The G.E. arm was, in my opinion, the best manipulator arm ever made – right up to current time. Biggest problem was cost – about $250,000 per arm and controllers. I used this system many times and it was superb!
Phil


General Electric's Re-entry & Environmental Systems Division later became Western Space and Marine.


See other early Underwater Robots here.

See other G.E. CAMS here:

1956- GE Yes Man
1958-9- GE Handyman – Ralph Mosher
1969 – GE Walking Truck – Ralph Mosher
1965-71- GE Hardiman I
1969- GE Man-Mate Industrial manipulator

1973 – Under Sea Mobility – Ralph Mosher (American)

Underwater Army Bases and Depot (See Figure 51: Under Sea Mobility)
Recent marine biology and ocean engineering work have resulted in some startling underwater activity concepts and systems designs that promise to pave the way to a profitable exploitation of untapped water resources. It is not difficult to argue that before this decade has passed the Army, as well as the Navy, will be involved in exploiting and protecting our underwater territory.
Already, large oil companies are competing for underwater rights for oil well operations. The United States government is the guardian of this territory and has the specific operational guidelines. Petroleum industries are currently designing huge and complex underwater oil mining operations. The author predicts that some day in the near future they will operate their own underwater stations. There are obvious advantages to this foray into our underwater territory.
The petroleum industries have found that to operate these underwater complexes they need transportation and mobility. They have design vehicles that travel from the surface down to the site and are able to do work by means of underwater manipulators. It follows that a necessary and valuable tool for underwater work will be unusual vehicles that can provide the ability for man to work remotely as he would on earth directly. The illustration in Figure 51 of this unusual underwater vehicle is a concept that might not ever be realized. However, it is predicted that the elements of this concept, the legs, and the manipulator arms, and the man's ability to operate the vehicle from within, are concepts that will be used to provide the kind of functions illustrated.

From: Technical Report Number 11768, Applying Force Feedback Servomechanism Technology To Mobility Platforms, Ralph Mosher, 1973.


The earlier G.E. Pedipulator concept dates back to 1962-64.

Land-based concepts done 1962, test Pedipulator demonstrated in 1964. It was never completed as a proposal for a more useful quadruped was put forward and accepted (see here ).


See other early Underwater Robots here.

See other G.E. CAMS here:

1956- GE Yes Man
1958-9- GE Handyman – Ralph Mosher
1969 – GE Walking Truck – Ralph Mosher
1965-71- GE Hardiman I
1969- GE Man-Mate Industrial manipulator

1969 – G.E. Man-Mate Industrial Manipulator – Ralph Mosher / Donald A. Kugath (American)

Video of Man-Mate CAM 1600 c1976 (narrated by Isaac Asimov).


 

Text of above.

New Industrial Boom Is Displayed by GE
Schenectady General Electric recently displayed the third member of its family of "Industrial manipulators," the Man-Mate CAM 1600 industrial boom for material handling.
The CAM 1600, like other Man-Mate booms, is designed to amplify the operator's strength and retain "human-like" dexterity by following his motions- According to GE officials, this line of industrial booms allows the operator to "feel" the material he handles and react instinctively to it with the ease of lifting a lightweight object by' hand. Basic to this "touch" feature, they said, is a Sens-A-Lift, electro-hydraulic servo control. system.
The CAM 1600 can handle loads up to a nominal capacity of 750 pounds, the capacity depending on the boom's reach and the load-gripper weight. The boom has a 22-foot horizontal reach and 15-foot vertical reach. It rotates on an axis of 300 degrees.
* * *
The Man-Mate series is manufactured by the cybernetics automation and mechanization systems operation of GE's reentry and environmental systems division headquartered here. The line was recently transferred to the division to consolidate the CAM's technology of the company.
The Man-Mate CAM 1600 has been in production service for about 10 months at the General
Electric Appliance Park East in Columia, Md., according to Howard A. Brust, manager-industrial sales for the CAMS Operation.
"The boom is used to sort packaged electric ranges for delivery to the warehouse, transfer time for each being 15-20 seconds.
* * *
The load gripper, or terminal device, is custom-designed to a customer's specific  requirement and provides the function of a man's hand. Some terminal devices now in use include vacuum grippers, mechanical jaws and carton cover lifts. Depending on the terminal device used, the boom can handle such diverse objects as large sheets of plate glass or metal, red-hot metal forgings, automobile transmissions or engines and bulky containers," Brust explained.
"Regarding the recent emphasis on personal safety, the Man-Mate offers a means to remove the man from direct contact with the object to be manipulated, particularly where the function cannot be automated for technical reasons. It's also no problem to provide the operator an air-conditioned cab," he added.



Ralph Mosher, then aged 49, with a version of Man-Mate.

Source: Life Magazine 2 May 1969, p36.

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Source: Robots: Fact, Fiction and Prediction – Jasia Reichardt.

Man-Mate was made in several versions to handle different loads. The model above was the larger machine, probably with a lifting capacity of 10,000 lb.  The Man-Mate 1600 had a smaller capacity of 1600 lb.


Of all the GE CAM prototypes, it appears the range of Man-Mates was the main one to stay in production, even being licenced to AST in Germany (see above).


Publication number    US3608743 A
Publication date    Sep 28, 1971
Filing date    May 4, 1970
Inventors    Kugath Donald A, Mosher Ralph S
Original Assignee    General Electric

Note: We see Ralph Mosher's name often enough in relation to GE's Cybernetic Machines, but Donald A. Kugath appears to be a significant player as well.

 

GE-Man-Mate-Manipulator-above


Western Space and Marine, which was founded by a GE engineer who worked on the Man-Mate line in the 1970s, bought the rights to the Man-Mate technology and continued to develop and improve it. The giant robotic arm, which uses force-feedback to allow the operator to lift loads up to 10,000 lbs, is today used mostly in the forging and foundry industries.

An old Man-Mate "For Sale" a while back.


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


See other GE CAMS here:

GE yes man robot life28may56p125 x80 1965 71   G.E. Hardiman I Exoskeleton   Ralph Mosher (American)1956- GE Yes Man
Mosher ge handyman Hula x80 1965 71   G.E. Hardiman I Exoskeleton   Ralph Mosher (American)1958-9- GE Handyman – Ralph Mosher
Pedipulator %20Walker S MFeb63 x80 1965 71   G.E. Hardiman I Exoskeleton   Ralph Mosher (American)1962 – GE Pedipulator – Ralph Mosher
Hardiman x80 Early Teleoperators, Exoskeletons and Industrial Robots1965-71- GE Hardiman I
GE Walking Truck Mosher x80 1965 71   G.E. Hardiman I Exoskeleton   Ralph Mosher (American)1969 – GE Walking Truck – Ralph Mosher

See all the known Teleoperators, Exoskeletons and Industrial Robots here.