Aside from creating things that are fun to look at and play with, principles of origami can also be used to prototype new designs, create helpful tools, and solve real world problems.
This Oriceps design is an example of a compliant mechanism that was inspired by Shafer's origami "Chomper", and was made for application as a pair of forceps that were later adapted and implemented for use on one of Intuitive Surgical's da Vinci robots. This gripping mechanism could be used for applications in remote-controlled space tools, other surgical devices, household items, and toys.
The Oriceps can be 3D printed or laser cut. The filament material used will determine the fatigue and flex properties of the mechanism. More flexible filaments will yield a mechanism that endures greater use and requires less force to actuate. More rigid filaments will yield a mechanism that requires more force to actuate, but will likely become brittle and break after fewer uses. See 'Print Settings'
The blue model shown was printed in PLA, the purple model was printed with PLA on top of a NinjaFlex base, and the white model was laser cut out of polypropylene (use attached DXF file).
Overview and Background
Compliant Mechanisms and Origami
Tiny origami-inspired devices are opening up new possibilities for minimally invasive surgery Some of the BYU technology recently licensed to Intuitive Surgical, leader in robotic surgery
Lesson Plan and Activity
Often when we think of origami, we may imagine little paper swans, fortune tellers, or ninja stars. Aside from creating things that are fun to look at and play with, principles of origami can also be used to prototype new designs, create helpful tools, and solve real world problems.
The Oriceps design was inspired by Shafer’s “Chomper”, and was made for application as a pair of origami-inspired forceps. Forceps are tweezers or pincers that are typically used in surgery or in a laboratory. Paper forceps would not be very useful on the operating table or in a lab, but this design was helpful as a prototype that contributed to elements of the final design.
Rendered image demonstrating how the Oriceps could be used in a surgery
Action origami is origami that can be animated or that has moving parts, like a bird that can flap its wings or a frog that can jump. The Oriceps design falls under the category of action origami because it actuates into an open or closed position when a force input is applied.
Origami can be used to prototype furniture, light fixtures, robotics components, collapsible tools, deployable space equipment, and so much more. It is an excellent option for concept development because paper is cheap, malleable, and easy to work with. Prototyping with origami can also be beneficial because it may provide insight as to how a design could be simplified or made with fewer materials and linkages. You may have to learn a few basic governing principles of origami to help achieve the desired shapes and designs, but with the help of a few origami books, online tutorials, and lots of practice, the possibilities are endless.
Origami prototype of jaws developed from a flat sheet of paper
Materials for Oriceps Origami Activity
Each student needs:
• An Oriceps paper handout
• Scissors (if the handouts have not been cut out)
• The folding directions
• A clean surface to perform the folds
Follow the 5 Steps shown below:
We will use mountain and valley folds as shown above.
Step 1: Cut out the Oriceps.
Step 2: Create mountain folds in the a and b lines.
Step 3: Now fold the b lines the opposite direction into valley folds.
Step 4: Mountain fold the c lines.
Step 5: Mountain fold the d lines.
Finished! Pinch the sides to open and close.
- Compliant Mechanisms
- Action Origami
- Applied Origami
Now that you have used paper to prototype and test the mechanism, you can now 3D print it!