Reinforcement Learning Control for Biped Robot Walking on Uneven Surfaces

Shouyi Wang, J. Braaksma, R. Babuska, D. Hobbelen
2006 The 2006 IEEE International Joint Conference on Neural Network Proceedings  
Biped robots based on the concept of (passive) dynamic walking are far simpler than the traditional fullycontrolled walking robots, while achieving a more natural gait and consuming less energy. However, lightly actuated dynamic walking robots, which rely on the natural limit cycle of their mechanical structure, are very sensitive to ground disturbances. Already a very small step down can cause the robot to lose stability. In this paper, we investigate the use of reinforcement learning to make
more » ... dynamic walking robot more robust against ground disturbances. The learning controller is applied to a simulated two-link biped which is an abstraction of a mechanical prototype developed at the Delft Biorobotics Laboratory. The learning controller has been designed such that it can be applied as a straightforward extension of the proportional-derivative (PD) controller currently used to drive the robot's pneumatic actuators. The learning controller is therefore suitable for the future implementation in the robot hardware. Simulation results demonstrate that the biped quickly learns to overcome step-down disturbances on the floor up to 10% of the leg length, without compromising the natural walking style provided by the PD controller, which was optimized for walking on an even surface. 0-7803-9490
doi:10.1109/ijcnn.2006.246966 fatcat:ejifdlqunbapxijidu6m7v4yly