Let's Make Robots!

Is it possible to control a linear actuator or servo with force sensitive resistors?

Hey, everyone, brand new to LMR and as of yet still unsure as to whether i'm in the right place or not.

 BASICALLY, my overall goal is to build a powered exoskeleton. I'm not joking, I'm absolutely serious. I want to build a powered exo. The first hurdle I'm coming across is how I would control the thing, and what I've got in my head is a system using a pair of force-sensitive resistors to control a variable-speed smart linear actuator or servo.

 Before I get much deeper into this, first off, I want to know if this is possible, second, what other hardware would I need.

 I'm new to robotics, but not new to electronics and programming. Should I press on with this, or am I completely barking up the wrong tree?

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Hi and welcome :)

Of course it is possible, but i suggest you start off with a simpler task. The question you just asked makes me think you're not familiar with the use of microcontrollers, so i suggest you go through the "Start Here" section at the top. That way you can get an overview on how MCUs (or microcontroller units) work. If you're gonna build an exoskeleton i'd say that microcontrollers are a must for your project, and getting to know them better before proceeding is something you should really do.

...but of course the answer is yes. Once you know your MCUs better it will be quite easy to wire a force sensitive resistor to it and to make it command a servo. Servo movement is also covered in the "Start Here" section. I don't think you would need extra hardware for it, it's all about confident with microcontrollers (you'll probably be using ADC or analog to digital converter to gather data from the resistor and a digital output to control servos).
Cool. Do you think that a project such as this could be acheived with Picaxe, or should I just start digging in to Arduino or another base?
Well i'm not really sure about how an exoskeleton works, but i think the picaxe could do the job. The only thing is that it is a bit slower than an arduino, but i don't think you would really notice this (= picaxe's speed will still be enough). You could try telling me some of the features you want to include so we can examine if the picaxe will do, but at the moment i don't see why it wouldn't.