Dynamics and control of bipedal robots

  • Yildirim Hurmuzlu
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Control and Information Sciences book series (LNCIS, volume 230)


A sound understanding of the dynamic principles governing legged locomotion is an essential requirement in developing high performance all terrain vehicles, designing highly mobile legged robots, and in the diagnosis and treatment of gait problems. Synthesis and analysis of bipedal locomotion is a complex task which requires knowledge of the dynamics of multi-link mechanisms, collision theory, control theory, and nonlinear dynamical systems theory. There is a rich body of literature that concerns the design and development of bipedal robots. Investigators in the field have conducted several numerical as well as experimental analyses to design robotic mechanisms capable of generating stable gait patterns. Desired gait patterns have been commonly generated by specially tailored objective functions or simply by imposing kinematic profiles of human gait patterns on the mechanisms under investigation. Subsequently, various control strategies have been developed to realize the desired patterns. Several investigators have approached the problem from a totally different perspective. It has been shown that unactuated, very simple bipedal mechanisms were able to walk on descending surfaces. This type of gait is called “passive walking” and has been receiving growing interest in the area. This line of research offers the potential of leading to simple machines that do not require the high power actuators that are requested by the active control schemes. Such an achievement will open new possibilities in the field and eliminate the two main obstacles: complexity and requirement of high power; that has impeded the development of autonomous walking robots. In this chapter we will review the main results in the development and analysis of bipedal robots. We will identify some of the main problems and seek to provide directions for future research.


Gait Pattern Kinematic Chain Inverted Pendulum Unilateral Constraint Bipedal Locomotion 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yildirim Hurmuzlu
    • 1
  1. 1.Mechanical Engineering DepartmentSouthern Methodist UniversityUSA

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