Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

MS in Mechanical Engineering (M.S.M.E.)

Degree Granting Department

Mechanical Engineering

Major Professor

Rajiv Dubey, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Redwan Alqasemi, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Craig Lusk, Ph.D.


Compliant Mechanisms, Robotic Wrist, Sensor Design, Calibration, Hall-effect Sensing


A compliant force/torque sensor for robot force control has been developed. This thesis presents methods of designing, testing, and implementing the sensor on a robotic system. The sensor uses an orthoplanar spring equipped with Hall-effect sensors to measure one component of force and two moment components. Its unique design allows for simple and cost effective manufacturing, high reliability, and compactness. The device may be used in applications where a robot must control contact forces with its environment, such as in surface cleaning tasks, manipulating doors, and removing threaded fasteners. The compliant design of the sensor improves force control performance and reduces impact forces.

Sensor design considerations are discussed, followed by a discussion of the proposed design concept. Theoretical compliance and stress analysis of the orthoplanar spring is presented that allows for rapid design calculations; these calculations are validated via finite element analysis. A mechanical design method is given which uses the results of the compliance and stress analysis. Transducer design is then addressed by developing a model of the sensor. The design methods are used to design a prototype sensor which is tested to determine its instrument uncertainty. Finally, the sensor is implemented on a robotic platform to test its performance in force control.