Patents by Inventor Harsha Prahlad

Harsha Prahlad has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Publication number: 20140036404
    Abstract: An electroadhesive gripping system includes a vacuum-augmented gripper. The gripper can include an electroadhesive surface associated with one or more electrodes and a load-bearing backing structure coupled to the electroadhesive surface. The backing couples to the backside of the electroadhesive surface so as to at least partially define a shape of the electroadhesive surface. The backing is configured to flex between a curled shape and an uncurled shape. A spreading arm is configured to apply force to the backing so as to flex the backing from the curled shape to the uncurled shape. When positioned next to a substrate, the uncurling motion of the backing can cause the electroadhesive surface to become vacuum sealed to the substrate. A power supply can be configured to apply voltage to the electroadhesive surface.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 11, 2013
    Publication date: February 6, 2014
    Applicant: SRI International
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Thomas P. Low, Ronald E. Pelrine
  • Publication number: 20140035306
    Abstract: Robotic hands and finger modules include an under-actuated finger with multiple joints including a distal joint, an intermediate joint, and a proximal joint. A brake subsystem in communication with each of the joints selectively locks and unlocks the joints individually. A robotic hand can selectively lock the joints of a finger individually such that one or more joints are locked while one or more joints are unlocked. In addition, the finger module can drive a tendon coupled to the joints to flex the underactuated finger in a manner determined by which of the joints is locked and which of the joints is unlocked. A robotic hand can move an underactuated finger with its distal and proximal joints unlocked until the finger makes contact with an object, and lock the proximal joint, in response to contact made with the object, while the distal joint remains unlocked.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 21, 2012
    Publication date: February 6, 2014
    Applicant: SRI International
    Inventors: Pablo E. Garcia, Thomas P. Low, Harsha Prahlad, Daniel Aukes, Susan Kim, Roy D. Kombluh
  • Publication number: 20130292303
    Abstract: A process for sorting materials using material-selective electroadhesive grippers is disclosed. At least one of an electroadhesive surface or a plurality of articles is manipulated such that multiple ones of the plurality of articles are at least intermittently proximate the electroadhesive surface. Voltage is applied to one or more electrodes in the electroadhesive surface to thereby cause the electroadhesive surface to selectively adhere to a subset of the plurality of articles based on the subset of the plurality of articles having different material properties than others of the plurality of articles. While the voltage is applied, the electroadhesive surface is moved with respect to the others of the plurality of articles to thereby separate the subset of the plurality of articles from the others of the plurality of articles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2013
    Publication date: November 7, 2013
    Applicant: SRI International
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Joseph S. Eckerle, Roy D. Kornbluh, Ronald E. Pelrine
  • Publication number: 20130294875
    Abstract: An electroadhesive gripping platform includes one or more electrodes. A power supply is configured to apply voltage to the one or more electrodes in the electroadhesive platform via one or more terminals. A controller is configured to operate the electroadhesive gripping platform to selectively adhere to items loaded thereon and thereby enhance traction control over such items. The controller can control the power supply to apply a voltage to the one or more electrodes in the electroadhesive platform to thereby cause the electroadhesive platform to adhere to an item disposed on the electroadhesive platform such that the item resists moving with respect to the electroadhesive platform. The controller can also control the voltage supply to reduce the voltage applied to the one or more terminals such that the item moves with respect to the electroadhesive platform.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2013
    Publication date: November 7, 2013
    Applicant: SRI International
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Ronald E. Pelrine, Brian K. McCoy, Thomas P. Low
  • Publication number: 20130276826
    Abstract: An electroadhesive cleaning device or system includes electrode(s) that produce electroadhesive forces from an input voltage to adhere debris against an electroadhesive surface, from which the debris is removed when the forces are controllably modified. Controlling the input voltage may designate the size of debris to be cleaned. A power source provides the input voltage, and the electroadhesive surface can be a continuous track across one or more rollers to move the device across a dirty foreign surface. Electrodes can be arranged in an interdigitated pattern having differing pitches that can be actuated selectively to clean debris of different sizes. Sensors can detect the amount of debris adhered to the electroadhesive surface, and reversed polarity pulses can help repel items away from the electroadhesive surface in a controlled manner.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 11, 2013
    Publication date: October 24, 2013
    Inventors: Karen S. Koenig, Harsha Prahlad, Ronald E. Pelrine, Roy D. Kornbluh
  • Patent number: 8564926
    Abstract: An electroadhesive gripping device or system includes a plurality of electroadhesive gripping surfaces, each having electrode(s) and each configured to be placed against respective surface regions of a foreign object, such that one or more electroadhesive forces can be provided between the electroadhesive gripping surfaces and the foreign object. Such electroadhesive forces operating to hold the foreign object against the electroadhesive gripping surfaces while the foreign object is held or moved by the electroadhesive gripping system. The electroadhesive gripping surfaces can be arranged onto a plurality of continuous fingers, and various gripping surfaces on each finger can be coupled together and manipulated with respect to each other by an actuating component, such as a cable actuator. A variable voltage can be delivered to the electrodes to control the amount of electroadhesive force generated, such that only a portion of a foreign object is held or moved.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2013
    Assignee: SRI International
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Ronald E. Pelrine, Pablo E. Garcia, Richard Mahoney, Joseph S. Eckerle
  • Publication number: 20130242455
    Abstract: An electroadhesive gripping system includes a shear gripper. The shear gripper can include an electroadhesive surface associated with one or more electrodes and a load-bearing structure coupled to the electroadhesive surface. A power supply can be configured to apply voltage to the one or more electrodes associated with the electroadhesive surface. A controller can be configured to cause a voltage to be applied, via the power supply, to the one or more electrodes associated with the electroadhesive surface to thereby cause the first shear gripper to adhere to an item situated proximate the electroadhesive surface. The controller can be configured to cause a shear force to be applied to the adhered item, via the load-bearing structure, that is sufficient to move the adhered item.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 2, 2013
    Publication date: September 19, 2013
    Applicant: SRI International
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Ronald E. Pelrine, Brian K. McCoy
  • Patent number: 8488295
    Abstract: A selectively rigidizable and actively steerable device is described. In one aspect, an articulatable device is described that includes a flexible inner tube having a first lumen, a flexible outer tube that receives the inner tube, and a multiplicity of overlapping, rigidizable scale-like strips. Each scale-like strip is coupled with the inner tube and positioned between the inner and outer tubes. Of particular note, the overlapping strips are actuatable between a non-rigidized state in which overlapping strips are slideable relative to one another and a rigidized state in which overlapping strips are not slideable relative to one another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2013
    Assignee: SRI International
    Inventors: Pablo Garcia, Thomas Low, Bryan Chavez, Harsha Prahlad
  • Patent number: 8436508
    Abstract: The present invention provides meta-materials with an actively controllable mechanical property. The meta-material includes a deformable structure and a set of activation elements. The activation elements are controllable between multiple states. The meta-material includes a first value for a mechanical property when one or more of the activation elements is in the first activation state and includes a second value for the mechanical property when the activation elements have been activated to the second activation state. In one aspect, the meta-material resembles a composite material where the connectivity between the component materials or shape and arrangement of the component materials is dynamically controllable so as to affect a mechanical property of the meta-material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 29, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2013
    Assignee: SRI International
    Inventors: Roy D. Kornbluh, Ronald E. Pelrine, Harsha Prahlad, Scott E. Stanford
  • Publication number: 20130058001
    Abstract: An electroadhesive gripping device or system includes a plurality of electroadhesive gripping surfaces, each having electrode(s) and each configured to be placed against respective surface regions of a foreign object, such that one or more electroadhesive forces can be provided between the electroadhesive gripping surfaces and the foreign object. Such electroadhesive forces operating to hold the foreign object against the electroadhesive gripping surfaces while the foreign object is held or moved by the electroadhesive gripping system. The electroadhesive gripping surfaces can be arranged onto a plurality of continuous fingers, and various gripping surfaces on each finger can be coupled together and manipulated with respect to each other by an actuating component, such as a cable actuator. A variable voltage can be delivered to the electrodes to control the amount of electroadhesive force generated, such that only a portion of a foreign object is held or moved.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 2, 2012
    Publication date: March 7, 2013
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Ronald E. Pelrine, Pablo E. Garcia, Richard Mahoney, Joseph S. Eckerle
  • Patent number: 8388519
    Abstract: A selectively rigidizable endoscopic device is described. In one aspect, an endoscopic medical device is described that includes a flexible inner tube having a first lumen, a flexible outer tube that receives the inner tube, and a multiplicity of overlapping, rigidizable scale-like strips. Each scale-like strip is coupled with the inner tube and positioned between the inner and outer tubes. Of particular note, the overlapping strips are actuatable between a non-rigidized state in which overlapping strips are slideable relative to one another and a rigidized state in which overlapping strips are not slideable relative to one another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 25, 2008
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2013
    Assignees: SRI International, The Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Junior University
    Inventors: Pablo Garcia, Thomas Low, Bryan Chavez, Harsha Prahlad, Natalia Isaza, Sanjeev Dutta
  • Publication number: 20120313857
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an adaptable input/output device. One embodiment of a hardware device for facilitating an interaction between a computing system and a user includes: an interaction surface for supporting the interaction, a single actuator capable of driving a first region of the interaction surface, and a first selective clamping mechanism capable of restricting movement of one or more second regions of the interaction surface that partly intersect the first region, wherein a displacement of one or more desired portions of the interaction surface is dynamically controllable.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 10, 2011
    Publication date: December 13, 2012
    Inventors: Rukman Senanayake, Grit Denker, Patrick D. Lincoln, Roy D. Kornbluh, Sierra J. Lincoln, Richard P. Heydt, Harsha Prahlad, Daniel McConnell Aukes, Karl D. van Dyk, Geoffrey A. Mangus, Joseph S. Eckerle
  • Publication number: 20120313854
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an adaptable input/output device. One embodiment of a hardware device for facilitating an interaction between a computing system and a user, the hardware device includes an adaptable surface for supporting the interaction, where the adaptable surface is dynamically deformable under a control of the computing system, and one or more sensors, in communication with the computing system, for detecting a physical presence that is not in direct contact with the adaptable surface. The computing system is configured to cause a deformation of the adaptable surface in response to the physical presence.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 10, 2011
    Publication date: December 13, 2012
    Inventors: RUKMAN SENANAYAKE, GRIT DENKER, PATRICK D. LINCOLN, ROY D. KORNBLUH, SIERRA J. LINCOLN, RICHARD P. HEYDT, HARSHA PRAHLAD, DANIEL McCONNELL AUKES, KARL D. van DYK, GEOFFREY A. MANGUS, JOSEPH S. ECKERLE
  • Publication number: 20120144950
    Abstract: A selectively rigidizable and actively steerable device is described. In one aspect, an articulatable device is described that includes a flexible inner tube having a first lumen, a flexible outer tube that receives the inner tube, and a multiplicity of overlapping, rigidizable scale-like strips. Each scale-like strip is coupled with the inner tube and positioned between the inner and outer tubes. Of particular note, the overlapping strips are actuatable between a non-rigidized state in which overlapping strips are slideable relative to one another and a rigidized state in which overlapping strips are not slideable relative to one another.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 17, 2012
    Publication date: June 14, 2012
    Applicant: SRI INTERNATIONAL
    Inventors: Pablo GARCIA, Thomas LOW, Bryan CHAVEZ, Harsha PRAHLAD
  • Publication number: 20120120544
    Abstract: Described herein is electroadhesion technology that permits controllable adherence between two objects. Electroadhesion uses electrostatic forces of attraction produced by an electrostatic adhesion voltage, which is applied using electrodes in an electroadhesive device. The electrostatic adhesion voltage produces an electric field and electrostatic adherence forces. When the electroadhesive device and electrodes are positioned near a surface of an object such as a vertical wall, the electrostatic adherence forces hold the electroadhesive device in position relative to the surface and object. This can be used to increase traction or maintain the position of the electroadhesive device relative to a surface. Electric control of the electrostatic adhesion voltage permits the adhesion to be controllably and readily turned on and off.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 19, 2012
    Publication date: May 17, 2012
    Applicant: SRI International
    Inventors: Ronald E. PELRINE, Harsha Prahlad, Joseph S. Eckerle, Roy D. Kornbluh, Scott E. Stanford
  • Patent number: 8125755
    Abstract: A selectively rigidizable and actively steerable device is described. In one aspect, an articulatable device is described that includes a flexible inner tube having a first lumen, a flexible outer tube that receives the inner tube, and a multiplicity of overlapping, rigidizable scale-like strips. Each scale-like strip is coupled with the inner tube and positioned between the inner and outer tubes. Of particular note, the overlapping strips are actuatable between a non-rigidized state in which overlapping strips are slideable relative to one another and a rigidized state in which overlapping strips are not slideable relative to one another.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 25, 2008
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2012
    Assignee: SRI International
    Inventors: Pablo Garcia, Thomas Low, Bryan Chavez, Harsha Prahlad
  • Patent number: 8125758
    Abstract: Described herein is electroadhesion technology that permits controllable adherence between two objects. Electroadhesion uses electrostatic forces of attraction produced by an electrostatic adhesion voltage, which is applied using electrodes in an electroadhesive device. The electrostatic adhesion voltage produces an electric field and electrostatic adherence forces. When the electroadhesive device and electrodes are positioned near a surface of an object such as a vertical wall, the electrostatic adherence forces hold the electroadhesive device in position relative to the surface and object. This can be used to increase traction or maintain the position of the electroadhesive device relative to a surface. Electric control of the electrostatic adhesion voltage permits the adhesion to be controllably and readily turned on and off.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 28, 2012
    Assignee: SRI International
    Inventors: Ronald E. Pelrine, Harsha Prahlad, Joseph S. Eckerle, Roy D. Kornbluh, Scott E. Stanford
  • Patent number: 8111500
    Abstract: Described herein is electroadhesion technology that permits controllable adherence between two objects. Electroadhesion uses electrostatic forces of attraction produced by an electrostatic adhesion voltage, which is applied using electrodes in an electroadhesive device. The electrostatic adhesion voltage produces an electric field and electrostatic adherence forces. When the electroadhesive device and electrodes are positioned near a surface of an object such as a vertical wall, the electrostatic adherence forces hold the electroadhesive device in position relative to the surface and object. This can be used to increase traction or maintain the position of the electroadhesive device relative to a surface. Electric control of the electrostatic adhesion voltage permits the adhesion to be controllably and readily turned on and off.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 9, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 7, 2012
    Assignee: SRI International
    Inventors: Ronald E. Pelrine, Harsha Prahlad, Roy D. Kornbluh, Patrick D. Lincoln, Scott Stanford
  • Publication number: 20110315477
    Abstract: A method of stabilizing a ladder is provided by attaching one or more electroadhesive devices to an attachment point on the ladder and contacting the device to a surface such as a wall or the floor. The electrostatic force achieved by applying a voltage difference in the device provides decreased ladder slip angles or increased shear forces required to create ladder slippage thereby improving ladder stability.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2010
    Publication date: December 29, 2011
    Applicants: SRI International
    Inventors: Harsha Prahlad, Ronald E. Pelrine, Peter Simeonov, Hongwei Hsiao
  • Publication number: 20110193362
    Abstract: An electroadhesive gripping device or system includes a plurality of electroadhesive gripping surfaces, each having electrode(s) and each configured to be placed against respective surface regions of a foreign object, such that one or more electroadhesive forces can be provided between the electroadhesive gripping surfaces and the foreign object. Such electroadhesive forces operating to hold the foreign object against the electroadhesive gripping surfaces while the foreign object is held or moved by the electroadhesive gripping system. The electroadhesive gripping surfaces can be arranged onto a plurality of continuous fingers, and various gripping surfaces on each finger can be coupled together and manipulated with respect to each other by an actuating component, such as a cable actuator. A variable voltage can be delivered to the electrodes to control the amount of electroadhesive force generated, such that only a portion of a foreign object is held or moved.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 16, 2010
    Publication date: August 11, 2011
    Applicant: SRI INTERNATIONAL
    Inventors: Harsha PRAHLAD, Ronald E. PELRINE, Pablo E. GARCIA, Richard MAHONEY, Joseph S. ECKERLE