Explicit dynamic finite element analysis of an automated grasping process using highly damped compliant fingers

Kok Meng Lee, Chih Hsing Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


This paper has been motivated by the need to reduce the number of live animal tests in the development of an automated live-bird transfer system (LBTS) for the poultry meat-processing industry. Simulation-based models have been developed, which carefully address key engineering issues prior to live animal tests so that physical experiments can be focused on understanding reflex issues such as fear and escape behavior. To gain insights into the effects of operational timing on the LBTS handling performance, the multibody dynamics is modeled numerically based on the method of explicit dynamic finite element analysis (FEA) using off-the-shelf FEA packages. The findings also offer information on contact forces and their locations acting on the object's body and legs by the compliant fingers and grippers respectively for optimizing designs and avoiding damage to the object. Specifically, this paper discusses computational issues such as time-step considerations and highly damped behavior of compliant fingers when modeling using dynamic FEA methods. The FEA model has been validated by comparing simulated handling of an ellipsoidal object by a pair of robotic hands with multiple compliant fingers against published experimental data. It is expected that the FEA-based method presented here can be extended to a spectrum of applications where flexible multibody dynamics involving large deformable contacts and highly damped behaviors plays an important role.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)965-977
Number of pages13
JournalComputers and Mathematics with Applications
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Sept

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics
  • Computational Mathematics


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