Development of a Soft Teaching Pendant for a Six-Axis Manipulator
The main objective of this paper is to present a soft teaching pendant as an alternative to those currently used in industry, such as the Yaskawa Motoman HP3J. The GUI has separate Tabs with local menus and buttons that depict different functionalities found in its industrial equivalent. Some of the main functions include direct kinematics, inverse kinematics, path planning, linear interpolation control navigation, joint interpolation control navigate and robot arm path planning movement. Furthermore, the soft pendant will include other functionalities, such as authentication, validations and safety measures, as well as descriptive help and error messages. The system was tested and evaluated as a teaching tool to control the 6-axis Yaskawa Motoman HP3J industrial robot, used by mechatronic students in the University of Nottingham. The paper will present the direct and inverse kinematics of the 6-axis robot, as well as key API functions used in moving the manipulator. The paper will conclude by comparing this soft teaching pendant functions to those found in its industrial equivalent, highlighting the advantages as a good teaching tool to aid students in understanding basic robotics fundamentals.
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