Types of Robot Grippers

Robot Grippers:

A robot gripper is a device which enables the holding of an object to be manipulated. The easier way to describe a gripper is to think of the human hand. Just like a hand, robot gripper enables holding, tightening, handling and releasing of an object. It just one component of an automated system. It can be attached to robot or it can be part of a fixed automation system.

Types of Robot Grippers and their Industrial Application are different based on type of Gripper and the purpose for which it is used. Primarily Industrial Robots works with 7 types of robot grippers:

1. Robot grippers with 2 fingers:

These are the simplest robot grippers, suitable for many industrial products and easy to manufacture. Within this group, different alternatives can be found: with opening control, pressure control, with distance control in the opening and closing, picking up pieces by inserting the two fingers inside a hole. They can also have pneumatic or electric actuation.

Our favorite models are the one from On-Robot and Robotic with its Plug & Play features in the Universal Robots that makes them easy to use in a factory. The one from On-Robot can have two grippers on one wrist, which expands the handling possibilities enormously and works independently.

2. Robot grippers with 3 fingers:

This type of robot gripper is not used that often since most automation cases can be solved with a tow-finger gripper. However, when it is necessary to pick up delicate objects with strength and precision, three fingers grippers are the solution. Besides, they adapt even better to non-flat surfaces with the articulated fingers.

3. Robot grippers with flexible fingers:

The robot grippers with flexible fingers are newer. It is more suitable to pick up different objects. Although they are more limited in general regarding volume and weight of the object to be picked, they are perfect for delicate things like food.

4. Grain-filled flexible:

This latex balloon filled with grain lays on the object to be picked, suck in the air of the balloon and turns into a rigid shape that holds the object without damaging it. It caused quite a shock after it was released due to its simplicity, concept and versatility. These have been variations afterward depending on the object to be picked.

5. Big robot grippers for parallelizing:

The progress here was made regarding standardization, since it is possible to purchase different predefined types of grippers for palletizing. There is also an increase in capacity and variety. It is quite interesting to see the use of 3D printing in the manufacturing since it adds the benefits of the individualized design and easy maintenance.

6. Semi-professional 3D printed Robot Grippers:

There are semi-professional 3D printed robot grippers in design platforms such as Grab-cad and Auto-desk Academy, among others that can be instantly manufactured by the user. These can be used as long as the necessary strength isn’t excessive and the objects are light enough. It regulates these grippers to the semi-professional and academic atmosphere.

7. Experimental Robot Grippers:

Festo has been working for a few years now on bionic grippers, inspired by nature, through Bionic Learning Network, which resulted in the Octopus Gripper. A different model is the EPFL rubber clamp made with five layers of materials: per-stretched rubber between two layers of electrodes, which make the fins curve outwards when they are off.

Robot grippers are the physical interface between a robot arm and the work-piece. This end of arm tooling (EOAT) is one of the most important parts of the robot. One of the many benefits of physical management robot is the reduction of part damage. A gripper comes in direct contact with your product, so it’s important to choose the right type of gripper for your operation.