“Leg-grope walk”: strategy for walking on fragile irregular slopes as a quadruped robot by force distribution

Yuichi Ambe, Fumitoshi Matsuno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Problems can often occur when a legged robot attempts to walk on irregular or damaged terrain, such as in search and rescue missions during natural and man-made disasters. In some cases, the ground beneath the robot will collapse because of the pressure of its weight, causing the machine to lose its foothold and topple over. This is a point to which we as designers must pay careful attention when designing a robot. Thus, in such irregular areas, the robot should walk carefully so as not to collapse its footholds. To attempt to solve this problem, we proposed the “leg-grope walk” method which allows a quadruped robot to avoid stumbling or causing a large collapse of the surrounding area on weak horizontal planes. Specifically, when the robot puts its foot on the ground, it applies some excess force on the ground and confirms whether the foothold is likely to collapse, so as to choose a foothold will not collapse. In this study, we extended this method to weak and irregular slopes, where slippage needs to be considered. A new walking method was designed using a force distribution method. To validate the method, we show simulation results from force distribution and robotic experiments in various environments. These results demonstrate that our method allows a robot to walk carefully without slipping or stumbling, even when its foothold is lost.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7
JournalROBOMECH Journal
Volume3
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Dec 1
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Force distribution
  • Fragile environment
  • Irregular terrain
  • Quadruped robot
  • Walking strategy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Instrumentation
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Control and Optimization
  • Artificial Intelligence

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