Robots are any automatically operated machine that can replace human efforts and can function in humanlike manners.
Standard robots lack a complete sensory system, so they cannot get a complete summary of their surroundings. Humans are able to smell, see, taste, touch and hear, but robots are not required to smell and hear. For robots, it important that they can at least see and feel an object. There are many ways for robots to see and feel. Robotics is the design, construction, and operation of robots used to perform human tasks.
Robots are typically used in automobile factories to complete repeating work or in environments dangerous for humans. For example, Rover was made by NASA to explore the surface of Mars which is too hot for human beings. Most of today’s robots use artificial intelligence and can even make their own choices. Now, the next goal in robotic is for robots to have self sufficiency. Human beings are made up of 5 major parts: a body structure, sensory system, power source, a muscle system, and a brain system. Robots have their own versions of almost each of these.
Most robots have a movable structure. A typical robot body consists of a power supply, a control system, sensors, actuators, and end effectors. Each body part carries out a function to help the robot move and fulfill its operated task. An actuator is the muscle of the robot. Actuators are devices for activating process control equipment. They are in charge of the motors and motion control algorithms.
There are many different types of actuators that are found in robotic arms which are: electric motors, shape memory metal, magnetostrictive, solenoids, manual, a hydraulic system, or a pneumatic system. Stepper motors have the ability of achieving precise curving rotation in both directions and a digital control technology. Hydraulic and pneumatic actuators work under fluid power; energy that is transmitted through a fluid under pressure. When a pressure is applied to a chamber with a piston, the piston will apply a force that will cause a motion. If the difference in force across the pston is greater than total weight and frcition forces, the piston will move. Robots may or may not use all of these types. The type of actuator that will be used depends mostly on the environment and terrain in which the robot is or will be in. The electrical circuits are made of a connecting wires and a power source that can switch or change electrical currents.
An electrical circuit is made of materials that have different levels of electrical conduction and contains many switches which control the flow of electricity through the circuit. There are two types of functional circuits which are series circuits and parallel circuits. A series circuit is a circuit where the same current of electricity flows through all transmitters of the circuit. This gives the current a single path.
In a series circuit, if just one transmitter is missing or burnt out, the current cannot flow, therefore the object won’t turn on.A parallel circuit is a circuit in which the transmitters are arranged in a pattern that will cause the current break up and meet again. Because the electrical current divides, each component is assured a charge. Unlike in a series circuit, if one path breaks, the other paths will still work because they are not reliant on each other. Houses are always built with parallel circuits, so that if one light burns out, the entire house won’t lose power.
One of the most common way to make robots move is by using motors. They help the mobility of the wheels on a mobile robot. There are many types of motor as well. DC motors are the most common and easiest to use motors available. They are connected to a power supply by two wires.
Servo motors are the ideal choice motors for control. They can be programmed to rotate in an exact position. Even though they can have perfect movement, they are unable to rotate continuously, so are not the best for driving wheels. Servos have three wires connected to them. Two of the wires are for the power supply, while the third wire is used as the control wire.
Ultrasonic sensors measure the distance to an object by using sound waves. This can be most related to the echolocation of bats. If an object is in the path of a sound wave, the wave is reflected back to the robot as an echo. Measuring the difference in time between sound waves indicates the distance of the object.
Measurement accuracy of the sound waves and distance can unfortunately be affected by the temperature and humidity of the environment. Distorted and unusual shapes can also affect accuracy. A photoelectric cell is the easiest vision system used in a robot. The cell enables the robot to decide whether or not the object is there. Similar to ultrasound, light will be reflected from the object and delivered to the photoelectric cell of the robot. The light waves are then converted into an electric current, which is transmitted to the brain of the robot and turned into a command.Television cameras are also used by robots.
Images received by the robot are compared with previously seen images and determined, depending if the robot has seen it before. Autonomous robots were first invented by William Grey Walter some time between 1948 and 1949. They are robots that can act on their own without a controller. Because autonomous robots can move through their surroundings and find unblocked passage ways, there can be many new ways to use these helpful robots. More advanced robots with stereo vision use this to see their environments and use cameras that give them depth perception, and software allows them to locate and classify objects in real time. Autonomous robots can be helpful in busy environments such as in a hospital. Instead of having employees leaving their posts or patients, a robot can deliver lab results and patient samples. Without a traditional control, these robots can navigate new hallways, and can even find alternate routes when another is blocked.
Most mobile robots have a balance system that tells its computer when it needs to correct its movements. A good example would be a collection of gyroscopes. Programming robots can be difficult or fairly easy. Most would say that this reason lies behind the experience level of the programmer, but it reality it just depends on what one is trying to program the robot to do. When the robot has been moved to a required position the point is recorded along with any other information required such as the speed and type of movement to the point. This is done one line at a time in much the same way to BASIC or C programming. Allowing multiple points to be built up, along with logic commands, such as wait, go to, if, and, etc.
When programming a robot it is important to understand the movement abilities and limitations. Artificial intelligence (AI) is the ability of a digital computer to perform tasks that are usually given with intelligent beings. The term is frequently applied to the project of developing systems given with the mental processes of humans, such as the ability to reason, discover meaning, generalize, or learn from past experience. It has been demonstrated that computers can be programmed to carry out very complex tasks since the development of the digital computer in the 1940s.Robots nowadays have achieved many new things that have helped humans discover new things and ask new and different questions. For example, deep sea exploration robots have help achieve new ocean depths. NASA’s Rover has given a new point of view and description on the surface of Mars that was never before possible. With all these new discoveries by robots, it makes one wonder and think about the future of robots and how it will affect our society.
Even though there are plenty of concerns and negative thoughts against robots, there are many more achievements that are yet to be accomplished, but without a doubt will at some point be achieved with the help of robots.