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A Simple Analytical Tool for Legged Robot Design

[+] Author Affiliations
Zhuohua Shen, Justin Seipel

Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

Paper No. DETC2012-71452, pp. 967-976; 10 pages
  • ASME 2012 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 4: 36th Mechanisms and Robotics Conference, Parts A and B
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA, August 12–15, 2012
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4503-5
  • Copyright © 2012 by ASME


Although legged locomotion is better at tackling complicated terrains compared with wheeled locomotion, legged robots are rare, in part, because of the lack of simple design tools. The dynamics governing legged locomotion are generally nonlinear and hybrid (piecewise-continuous) and so require numerical simulation for analysis and are not easily applied to robot designs. During the past decade, a few approximated analytical solutions of Spring-Loaded Inverted Pendulum (SLIP), a canonical model in legged locomotion, have been developed. However, SLIP is energy conserving and cannot predict the dynamical stability of real-world legged locomotion. To develop new analytical tools for legged robot designs, we first analytically solved SLIP in a new way. Then based on SLIP solution, we developed an analytical solution of a hip-actuated Spring-Loaded Inverted Pendulum (hip-actuated-SLIP) model, which is more biologically relevant and stable than the canonical energy conserving SLIP model. The analytical approximations offered here for SLIP and the hip actuated-SLIP solutions compare well with the numerical simulations of each. The analytical solutions presented here are simpler in form than those resulting from existing analytical approximations. The analytical solutions of SLIP and the hip actuated-SLIP can be used as tools for robot design or for generating biological hypotheses.

Copyright © 2012 by ASME
Topics: Robots , Design



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