Robot modeling and low-level programming

Robotic manipulators have become a common manufacturing tool in different industries. In the last decade, researchers have extended the applications of robots to many areas, having as practical result new types of robots. The variety of robotic applications implies a new classification, mainly based on the mechanical structure. Currently, advanced robotic systems include serial manipulators, parallel robots, mobile robots (ground, marine, and aerial), humanoid robots, special application robots. 

Independent of the robot category, the most important part in designing/analyzing a robotic structure is the mathematical model. Robot modeling includes primarily the kinematics and dynamics. Strongly connected with the robot model is the simulation and testing of the models. 

In this research direction, we focus mainly on determination of robot models and their implementation in real-time embedded systems. In particular, we focus on finding and applying new methods to reduce and optimize the complexity of the models. On the other hand, we are developing and optimizing new embedded systems applications and tools for our robotic platforms. Low-level programming for these systems is either made in ANSI C, or platform-specific programming languages like G-Code or Karel. 

Our open and ongoing projects in this area are listed below, together with a selection of completed projects where relevant.

Connected Industrial Worker

The main aim of this project would be to use the advanced AR/VR capabilities of the Hololens and the Google Tango devices to help an industrial worker in his everyday tasks. This project is part of the on-going research with the Accenture company using the Baxter cobot.

Real-time control using a polynomial representation

Fuzzy-polynomial approaches have gained considerable interest in the last years for control of nonlinear systems. The stability and design conditions for such models are derived in the form of sum-of-squares, which can be solved using available tools.

This project aims at the testing and validation of the SOS approach on an available laboratory setup. Options include the Quanser rotational inverted pendulum, controlling an Inteco3D crane to move the load along a designated trajectory, a Cyton Gamma robot arm, etc.

Young Teams grant: Handling non-smooth effects in control of real robotic systems

Robotics has a growing impact on our everyday life. Traditional applications are complemented by the integration of robots in the human environment. With the availability of low cost sensors, aerial robotics also became an active area of research. However, many of the practical challenges associated to the real time control of robotic systems are not yet resolved.

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