Despite the constant technological innovations, the pruning of palm trees is still carried out manually by skilled operators, with the aid of climbing devices and cutting tools. The present work stems from the need to replace humans with robots in the activities of climbing and pruning of palm trees, so as to eliminate the severe danger related to the height and the difficulty of cutting operations. Human workers are indeed exposed to risk of injury, due to possible accidental falls, cutting, skin punctures, dust inhalation, flying splinters. Pruning of palm trees has a frequency variable from 2 to 4 years. For a single pruning carried out by one operator, the cost is approximately 500 Euros. Therefore, the use of a robot, other than risks, allows decreasing costs as well. In the paper, the conceptual design of a pruning robot is presented; it basically consists of a climbing module on which it is mounted a cutting module. The cutter is capable of a continuous rotation (i.e. exceeding 360°), that allows to perform a complete cut of the dead leaves located in the lower part of the palm crown. Special care has been devoted to the intrinsic safety aspects, fast installation and ease-of-use of the robot, along with a low overall cost for both off-the-shelves components and manufacturing of custom-made structural parts.

CONCEPTUAL DESIGN AND FEASIBILITY STUDY OF ACROBAT, AN AUTONOMOUS CLIMBING ROBOT FOR AUTOMATIC TRIMMING OF PALM LEAVES

Berselli Giovanni;Razzoli Roberto
2017

Abstract

Despite the constant technological innovations, the pruning of palm trees is still carried out manually by skilled operators, with the aid of climbing devices and cutting tools. The present work stems from the need to replace humans with robots in the activities of climbing and pruning of palm trees, so as to eliminate the severe danger related to the height and the difficulty of cutting operations. Human workers are indeed exposed to risk of injury, due to possible accidental falls, cutting, skin punctures, dust inhalation, flying splinters. Pruning of palm trees has a frequency variable from 2 to 4 years. For a single pruning carried out by one operator, the cost is approximately 500 Euros. Therefore, the use of a robot, other than risks, allows decreasing costs as well. In the paper, the conceptual design of a pruning robot is presented; it basically consists of a climbing module on which it is mounted a cutting module. The cutter is capable of a continuous rotation (i.e. exceeding 360°), that allows to perform a complete cut of the dead leaves located in the lower part of the palm crown. Special care has been devoted to the intrinsic safety aspects, fast installation and ease-of-use of the robot, along with a low overall cost for both off-the-shelves components and manufacturing of custom-made structural parts.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11567/888613
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