Date of Award

August 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Electrical and Computer Engineering (Holcomb Dept. of)

Committee Member

Ian D Walker

Committee Member

Adam Hoover

Committee Member

Apoorva Kapadia


This thesis describes the development of a novel concept for a soft gripper with pneumatically articulated fingers and palm used in the pick and place operations of raw chicken to aid with the shortage of human workers that currently perform this task. The gripper was attached to an industrial robot and tested by picking raw chicken parts moving along a conveyor and placing those parts into trays. Four different parts were tested over 250 times each for a total of more than 1000 trials. Over the course of these trials the gripper saw an overall success rate of 63.57%. While this is low, promising results occurred when the pressure in the palm was roughly doubled, yielding success rates around 95%. However, these pressures led to the palm bursting. With a greater investigation in materials and design, a more robust gripper could be achieved.



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