Limbed Systems

  • Shuuji KajitaEmail author
  • Christian Ott
Part of the Springer Handbooks book series (SHB)


A limbed system is a mobile robot with a body, legs and arms. First, its general design process is discussed in Sect. 17.1. Then we consider issues of conceptual design and observe designs of various existing robots in Sect. 17.2. As an example in detail, the design of a humanoid robot HRP-4C is shown in Sect. 17.3. To design a limbed system of good performance, it is important to take into account of actuation and control, like gravity compensation, limit cycle dynamics, template models, and backdrivable actuation. These are discussed in Sect. 17.4.

In Sect. 17.5, we overview divergence of limbed systems. We see odd legged walkers, leg–wheel hybrid robots, leg–arm hybrid robots, tethered walking robots, and wall-climbing robots. To compare limbed systems of different configurations, we can use performance indices such as the gait sensitivity norm, the Froude number, and the specific resistance, etc., which are introduced in Sect. 17.6.


Humanoid Robot Bevel Gear Controller Area Network Ball Screw Quadruped Robot 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.





adaptive suspension vehicle


controller area network


computional brain


centroid moment pivot


center of mass


German Aerospace Center


degree of freedom


fiber-reinforced plastics


gait sensitivity norm


humanoid robotics project


inertial measurement unit


linear inverted pendulum


nickel metal hydride battery


pantograph mechanism driven






series elastic actuator


spring loaded inverted pendulum


self-excited tripodal dynamic experimental robot


Technical University of Munich


zero moment point


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Intelligent Systems Research InstituteNational Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)TsukubaJapan
  2. 2.Institute of Robotics and MechatronicsGerman Aerospace Center (DLR)WesslingGermany

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