Fast, robust quadruped locomotion over challenging terrain

M. Kalakrishnan, J. Buchli, P. Pastor, M. Mistry, S. Schaal

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract / Description of output

We present a control architecture for fast quadruped locomotion over rough terrain. We approach the problem by decomposing it into many sub-systems, in which we apply state-of-the-art learning, planning, optimization and control techniques to achieve robust, fast locomotion. Unique features of our control strategy include: (1) a system that learns optimal foothold choices from expert demonstration using terrain templates, (2) a body trajectory optimizer based on the Zero-Moment Point (ZMP) stability criterion, and (3) a floating-base inverse dynamics controller that, in conjunction with force control, allows for robust, compliant locomotion over unperceived obstacles. We evaluate the performance of our controller by testing it on the LittleDog quadruped robot, over a wide variety of rough terrain of varying difficulty levels. We demonstrate the generalization ability of this controller by presenting test results from an independent external test team on terrains that have never been shown to us.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-4244-5040-4
ISBN (Print)978-1-4244-5038-1
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2010


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