One of the major limitations of mobile robots for unstructured environments is their lack of general mobility. Wheeled, treaded, and legged robots each have their advantages and disadvantages, but they all lack the flexibility to be able to cope with a wide range of terrain. The actuated spoke wheel concept is presented in this paper as an alternative locomotive method that allows multiple modes of motion, which give it the ability to stride quickly using one contact point per wheel, walk with static stability with two contact points per wheel, or assume a stable stance using three contact points per wheel. This paper presents the preliminary kinematic analyses of the actuated spoke wheel with no-slip constraints at the ground contacts for a robot using a two actuated spoke wheel configuration. Straight-line motion and considerations for turning are discussed for the one- and two-point contact schemes followed by recommendations for future study.

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