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Virtual model control of a bipedal walking robot

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3 Author(s)
Pratt, J. ; Leg Lab., MIT, Cambridge, MA, USA ; Dilworth, P. ; Pratt, G.

The transformation from high level task specification to low level motion control is a fundamental issue in sensorimotor control in animals and robots. This paper describes a control scheme called virtual model control that addresses this issue. Virtual model control is a motion control language that uses simulations of imagined mechanical components to create forces, which are applied through real joint torques, thereby creating the illusion that the virtual components are connected to the robot. Due to the intuitive nature of this technique, designing a virtual model controller requires the same skills as designing the mechanism itself. A high level control system can be cascaded with the low level virtual model controller to modulate the parameters of the virtual mechanisms. Discrete commands from the high level controller would then result in fluid motion. Virtual model control has been applied to a physical bipedal walking robot. A simple algorithm utilizing a simple set of virtual components has successfully compelled the robot to walk continuously over level terrain

Published in:

Robotics and Automation, 1997. Proceedings., 1997 IEEE International Conference on  (Volume:1 )

Date of Conference:

20-25 Apr 1997

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