Multi-Contact Planning and Control

Karim Bouyarmane, Stéphane Caron, Adrien Escande and Abderrahmane Kheddar.


The essence of humanoid robots is their ability to reproduce human skills in locomotion and manipulation. Early efforts in humanoid research were dedicated to bipedal walking, first on flat terrains and recently on uneven ones, while the manipulation capabilities inherit from the literature in bimanual and dexterous-hand manipulation. In practice, the two problems interact largely. Locomotion in cluttered spaces benefits from extra contacts between any part of the robot and the environment, such as when grippers grasp a handrail during stair climbing, while legs can conversely enhance manipulation capabilities, such as when arching the whole-body to augment contact pressure at an end-effector. The two problems share the same background: they are governed by non-smooth dynamics (friction and impacts at contacts) under viability constraints including dynamic stability. Consequently, they are now solved jointly. This chapter highlights the state-of-the-art techniques used for this purpose in multi-contact planning and control.


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