This work presents a torque measurement method of 3-degree-of-freedom (3-DOF) haptic master featuring controllable electrorheological (ER) fluid. In order to reflect the sense of an organ for a surgeon, the ER haptic master which can generate the repulsive torque of an organ is utilized as a remote controller for a surgery robot. Since accurate representation of organ feeling is essential for the success of the robot-assisted surgery, it is indispensable to develop a proper torque measurement method of 3-DOF ER haptic master. After describing the structural configuration of the haptic master, the torque models of ER spherical joint are mathematically derived based on the Bingham model of ER fluid. A new type of haptic device which has pitching, rolling, and yawing motions is then designed and manufactured using a spherical joint mechanism. Subsequently, the field-dependent parameters of the Bingham model are identified and generating repulsive torque according to applied electric field is measured. In addition, in order to verify the effectiveness of the proposed torque model, a comparative work between simulated and measured torques is undertaken.
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