This work develops an analytical basis for designing the locomotion of mobile robots with a circular core and equispaced diametral legs which actuate linearly. Two elementary regimes of motion are first developed using the intrinsic geometry of the mechanism, then combined for fluid motion. The first and primary gait has a path trajectory defined by its kinematic constraints. Dynamics are explored to assist actuator design and understand the mechanism's constraint forces. Simulation results are provided in support of the design concept and geometric optimization. The proposed robot, or Locomotive Amoebic Device (LAD), bears resemblance with certain cellular locomotion, and thus miniaturization is a possibility. A prototype of LAD is constructed which supports the design theory and simulation by executing the primary motion regime with appropriate speed and current settings. Future work is promising for extending the design to a spherical concept, generalizing the theory in terms of the number of legs, creating a variety of control schemes for maneuvers such as dampening phase transitions or pure rolling, equipping and justifying the design for applications such as Planetary Exploration or Medical Procedures, and potentially creating a millimeter scale version or smaller of spherical LAD. This thesis theorizes a unique mode of locomotion and proffers simulation and experimental support.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Mobile robots--Design and construction; Robots--Motion; Robots--Programming
Department, Program, or Center
Mechanical Engineering (KGCOE)
Steffan, Eric R., "Locomotion of circular robots with diametrically translating legs: Design, analysis, and fabrication" (2010). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus