Curved fences for part alignment

Mike Brokowski*, Michael Peshkin, Ken Goldberg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

18 Scopus citations


In automated packing or assembly it is often necessary to bring randomly oriented parts into uniform alignment. Mechanical methods such as vibratory bowl feeders are often used for this purpose, although there is no theory for the systematic design of such feeders. A slanted 'fence' attached to the stationary sides of a conveyor belt is also capable of orienting a stream of parts and a sequence of such fences has been shown [14] to function as a systematically designable linear parts feeder. A limitation of fence alignment is that once a part has left contact with a fence, its final orientation is confined to a narrow range of angles but is not unique. Here we consider the design of an individual fence, consisting of a straight slanted section followed by an optimal curved tail. The straight section selectively aligns certain edges of the part, while the curved tail preserves this alignment precisely as the part leaves contact with the fence. We have found the shortest tail which guarantees alignment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
PublisherPubl by IEEE
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)0818634529
StatePublished - Jan 1 1993
EventProceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation - Atlanta, GA, USA
Duration: May 2 1993May 6 1993


OtherProceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
CityAtlanta, GA, USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Control and Systems Engineering

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