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Publication# Learning Constrained Distributions of Robot Configurations with Generative Adversarial Network

Sylvain Calinon, Julius Maximilian Jankowski, Emmanuel Pignat, Teguh Santoso Lembono

2021

Journal paper

2021

Journal paper

Abstract

In high dimensional robotic system, the manifold of the valid configuration space often has a complex shape, especially under constraints such as end-effector orientation or static stability. We propose a generative adversarial network approach to learn the distribution of valid robot configurations under such constraints. It can generate configurations that are close to the constraint manifold. We present two applications of this method. First, by learning the conditional distribution with respect to the desired end-effector position, we can do fast inverse kinematics even for very high degrees of freedom (DoF) systems. Then, we use it to generate samples in sampling-based constrained motion planning algorithms to reduce the necessary projection steps, speeding up the computation. We validate the approach in simulation using the 7-DoF Panda manipulator and the 28-DoF humanoid robot Talos.

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Related concepts (33)

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Motion planning

Motion planning, also path planning (also known as the navigation problem or the piano mover's problem) is a computational problem to find a sequence of valid configurations that moves the object from the source to destination. The term is used in computational geometry, computer animation, robotics and computer games. For example, consider navigating a mobile robot inside a building to a distant waypoint. It should execute this task while avoiding walls and not falling down stairs.

Inverse kinematics

In computer animation and robotics, inverse kinematics is the mathematical process of calculating the variable joint parameters needed to place the end of a kinematic chain, such as a robot manipulator or animation character's skeleton, in a given position and orientation relative to the start of the chain. Given joint parameters, the position and orientation of the chain's end, e.g. the hand of the character or robot, can typically be calculated directly using multiple applications of trigonometric formulas, a process known as forward kinematics.

Robotic arm

A robotic arm is a type of mechanical arm, usually programmable, with similar functions to a human arm; the arm may be the sum total of the mechanism or may be part of a more complex robot. The links of such a manipulator are connected by joints allowing either rotational motion (such as in an articulated robot) or translational (linear) displacement. The links of the manipulator can be considered to form a kinematic chain. The terminus of the kinematic chain of the manipulator is called the end effector and it is analogous to the human hand.

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