Skip to main content
placeholder image

Three-Dimensional Printed Braided Sleeves for Manufacturing McKibben Artificial Muscles

Journal Article


Abstract


  • Fluidic McKibben artificial muscles operate either pneumatically or hydraulically, offering engineering performance similar to those of skeletal muscles. These muscles are normally made of two essential parts: an elastomeric bladder and braided sleeve. To date, the braided sleeves used in manufacturing conventional McKibben artificial muscles are made with industrial braiding machines. In this study, we investigate an alternative method to manufacture braided sleeves using a three-dimensional (3D) printing technique. The 3D printing allows for more versatility in controlling the geometry and the structure of the braids. To this end, two structurally different kinds of braided sleeves with connected and disconnected junction points were manufactured. Both kinds of 3D printed braided sleeves were made with similar geometry. The hydraulic McKibben muscle made using the 3D braided sleeves with disconnected junction points was able to generate isometric forces up to 960 mN (53 kPa), actuation strains up to 6.7%, and power per mass of 0.032 W/kg in ∼1 s at a supply water pressure of 0.66 bar. This unique 3D printing technique is simple, fast, and accurate that can be easily modified to fabricate tools for small robotic systems where custom manufacturing is required.

Publication Date


  • 2019

Citation


  • Sangian, D., Jeiranikhameneh, A., Naficy, S., Beirne, S., & Spinks, G. M. (2019). Three-Dimensional Printed Braided Sleeves for Manufacturing McKibben Artificial Muscles. 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing, 6(1), 57-62. doi:10.1089/3dp.2018.0103

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85060865708

Start Page


  • 57

End Page


  • 62

Volume


  • 6

Issue


  • 1

Abstract


  • Fluidic McKibben artificial muscles operate either pneumatically or hydraulically, offering engineering performance similar to those of skeletal muscles. These muscles are normally made of two essential parts: an elastomeric bladder and braided sleeve. To date, the braided sleeves used in manufacturing conventional McKibben artificial muscles are made with industrial braiding machines. In this study, we investigate an alternative method to manufacture braided sleeves using a three-dimensional (3D) printing technique. The 3D printing allows for more versatility in controlling the geometry and the structure of the braids. To this end, two structurally different kinds of braided sleeves with connected and disconnected junction points were manufactured. Both kinds of 3D printed braided sleeves were made with similar geometry. The hydraulic McKibben muscle made using the 3D braided sleeves with disconnected junction points was able to generate isometric forces up to 960 mN (53 kPa), actuation strains up to 6.7%, and power per mass of 0.032 W/kg in ∼1 s at a supply water pressure of 0.66 bar. This unique 3D printing technique is simple, fast, and accurate that can be easily modified to fabricate tools for small robotic systems where custom manufacturing is required.

Publication Date


  • 2019

Citation


  • Sangian, D., Jeiranikhameneh, A., Naficy, S., Beirne, S., & Spinks, G. M. (2019). Three-Dimensional Printed Braided Sleeves for Manufacturing McKibben Artificial Muscles. 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing, 6(1), 57-62. doi:10.1089/3dp.2018.0103

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85060865708

Start Page


  • 57

End Page


  • 62

Volume


  • 6

Issue


  • 1