Because the number of students majoring in sciences has been decreasing, it is thought that students had better know the essences of sciences, and get interested in them during their early years. The author assumed that open lectures for junior high school students may be effective for these purposes, and based on this assumption, open lectures on robots have been carried out. In each of these lectures, one of the topics about robotics was introduced, and it was expected that the participants feel as if they learned the essence of robotics. Questionnaires were carried out to investigate the changes of the participants' impressions of robots. As a result, it was confirmed that a majority of the participants knew some mechanisms of robots that they had not known before participation in the lectures. About half of the participants attended the author's college after graduation of their junior high school, and for such participants, another questionnaire was carried out. As a result, it was confirmed that most of them answered that the lectures were helpful for deciding which college to attend. These results mean that the author's open lectures could provide an opportunity of knowing the essence of robotics, and it could help some participants to decide their college and/or college department to attend. In summary, it is expected that providing an opportunity of knowing an essence of science can avert students' disinterest in sciences.
Omnidirectional driving gear is a proprietary technology designed and possessed by Tadakuma laboratory in Yamagata University. It is a next generation gear mechanism having two degrees of freedom on one gear surface. We have newly developed a free form omnidirectional driving gear by combining flat and convex arc surfaces. A v-grove rail guide mechanism is adopted to enable stable horizontal motion along the planar gear surface and rotational motion round the convex gear surface. With this setup, we were able to design and operate an omnidirectional driving gear corresponding to a free-form surface. Although this mechanism adopt rail and cantilever structure, it was confirmed by experiments that its performance is comparable to that of the conventional flat plate omnidirectional driving gear. In this design, the motion range is small and is limited to the shape of the curvature. We plan to come up with a 2nd prototype design which will be more flexible and that will be able to achieve sophisticated motion path trajectories.
In this study, angular rate feedback control of multi-rotor helicopter is designed by using adaptive PID method. In recent years, multi-rotor helicopters have gained worldwide attention. The multi-rotor helicopters are expected to work in various fields such as aerial photograph, transportation, inspection. Adaptive PID controller with parallel feed-forward compensator: PFC is designed based on mathematical model of the helicopter. The effectiveness of the proposed control system is verified by numerical simulation and experiment. The results of the experiment with jig, and free flight experiment shows the efficiency of proposed adaptive angular rate controller.