Autonomous Robots

, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 1–12 | Cite as

A unifying framework for robot control with redundant DOFs

  • Jan PetersEmail author
  • Michael Mistry
  • Firdaus Udwadia
  • Jun Nakanishi
  • Stefan Schaal
Open Access


Recently, Udwadia (Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 2003:1783–1800, 2003) suggested to derive tracking controllers for mechanical systems with redundant degrees-of-freedom (DOFs) using a generalization of Gauss’ principle of least constraint. This method allows reformulating control problems as a special class of optimal controllers. In this paper, we take this line of reasoning one step further and demonstrate that several well-known and also novel nonlinear robot control laws can be derived from this generic methodology. We show experimental verifications on a Sarcos Master Arm robot for some of the derived controllers. The suggested approach offers a promising unification and simplification of nonlinear control law design for robots obeying rigid body dynamics equations, both with or without external constraints, with over-actuation or underactuation, as well as open-chain and closed-chain kinematics.


Non-linear control Robot control Tracking control Gauss’ principle Constrained mechanics Optimal control Kinematic redundancy 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Peters
    • 1
    • 4
    Email author
  • Michael Mistry
    • 1
  • Firdaus Udwadia
    • 1
  • Jun Nakanishi
    • 2
    • 3
  • Stefan Schaal
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.University of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.ATR Computational Neuroscience LaboratoriesKyotoJapan
  3. 3.ICORP, Japan Science and Technology AgencyKyotoJapan
  4. 4.Department SchölkopfMax-Planck Institute for Biological CyberneticsTübingenGermany

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