Online Gain Adaptation of Whole-Body Control for Legged Robots with Unknown Disturbances
Frontiers in Robotics and AI
This paper proposes an online gain adaptation approach to enhance the robustness of whole-body control (WBC) framework for legged robots under unknown external force disturbances. Without properly accounting for external forces, the closed-loop control system incorporating WBC may become unstable, and therefore the desired task goals may not be achievable. To study the effects of external disturbances, we analyze the behavior of our current WBC framework via the use of both full-body and
... dal dynamics. In turn, we propose a way to adapt feedback gains for stabilizing the controlled system automatically. Based on model approximations and stability theory, we propose three conditions to ensure that the adjusted gains are suitable for stabilizing a robot under WBC. The proposed approach has four contributions. We make it possible to estimate the unknown disturbances without force/torque sensors. We then compute adaptive gains based on theoretic stability analysis incorporating the unknown forces at the joint actuation level. We demonstrate that the proposed method reduces task tracking errors under the effect of external forces on the robot. In addition, the proposed method is easy-to-use without further modifications of the controllers and task specifications. The resulting gain adaptation process is able to run in real-time. Finally, we verify the effectiveness of our method both in simulations and experiments using the bipedal robot Draco2 and the humanoid robot Valkyrie.