Stair Climbing Stabilization of the HRP-4 Humanoid Robot using Whole-body Admittance Control

Stéphane Caron, Abderrahmane Kheddar and Olivier Tempier. ICRA 2019, Montreal, Canada, May 2019.


We consider dynamic stair climbing with the HRP-4 humanoid robot as part of an Airbus manufacturing use-case demonstrator. We share experimental knowledge gathered so as to achieve this task, which HRP-4 had never been challenged to before. In particular, we extend walking stabilization based on linear inverted pendulum tracking by quadratic programming-based wrench distribution and a whole-body admittance controller that applies both end-effector and CoM strategies. While existing stabilizers tend to use either one or the other, our experience suggests that the combination of these two approaches improves tracking performance. We demonstrate this solution in an on-site experiment where HRP-4 climbs an industrial staircase with 18.5 cm high steps, and release our walking controller as open source software.


Climbing stairs

Standing on mobile ground


pdf Paper
pdf Presentation given at JRL on 11 December 2018
pdf Poster presented at ICRA 2019
github Walking controller (C++)
doi 10.1109/ICRA.2019.8794348

Supplementary material

html Floating base observer used in this controller


  title = {Stair Climbing Stabilization of the {HRP}-4 Humanoid Robot using Whole-body Admittance Control},
  author = {Caron, St{\'e}phane and Kheddar, Abderrahmane and Tempier, Olivier},
  booktitle = {IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation},
  url = {},
  year = {2019},
  month = may,
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