Wheeled Adjustable Stand for Deploying Robotic Systems in Glovebox Ports

Photo of Chico Vela, Kimberly Milling, and Kevin Janes Students: Chico Vela, Kimberly Milling, and Kevin Janes

Sponsor: Los Alamos National Laboratory

Date: Spring 2011

Requirements:
The stand is required to support two separate SIA5D robots simultaneously. Due to a variety of glovebox sizes and glove port orientations, the stand must be adjustable in the vertical and horizontal directions. A seemingly simple, yet necessary, requirement is a wheeled base to allow smooth transportation of the equipment. In addition, the stand must have a minimal footprint with a width of no more than 3 ft., and must fit through a standard door frame (80 in. by 36 in.) while both robotic arms are attached. However, the height and width ranges of the stand should extend beyond these dimensions. The stand should be self-supportingn. The portable system should not exert any forces on a glovebox while the robotic arms are operating through a glove port.

Problem:
Create a wheeled adjustable stand for deployment of robotic systems into glovebox ports. This project supports a larger effort to reduce the amount of time than an operator must spend working in a glovebox. The goal is to increase operator safety and reduce radiation dosage intake from the hazardous materials.

Solution:
The team's solution is a stand with superior range of motion that allows the robotic arms to be adjusted independently. The stand consists of two posts equipped with sliding linkage assemblies. Each assembly includes two sliding lockable collars attached to rods that meet at the robot interface. The base of the stand has been designed with room to support the controller of the robotic arms. The robotic arms are adjusted vertically and horizontally by moving the collars up and down the length of the post. In addition, there are sliding tubes that encase the main posts that allow the entire linkage assembly to be adjusted vertically using a pin/hole system, so it is capable of reaching the highest of glove ports. In addition, the stand can be oriented at a corner of a glovebox to allow the robotic arms to be deployed on two adjacent sides of the glovebox. Static and dynamic force analyses were performed in order to verify the stand is a stable system and will support all external loads during operation.

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