Geometry-aware Manipulability Learning, Tracking and Transfer logo

Geometry-aware Manipulability Learning, Tracking and Transfer

Jan 15, 2021
Abstract: Body posture influences human and robots performance in manipulation tasks, as appropriate poses facilitate motion or force exertion along different axes. In robotics, manipulability ellipsoids arise as a powerful descriptor to analyze, control and design the robot dexterity as a function of the articulatory joint configuration. This descriptor can be designed according to different task requirements, such as tracking a desired position or apply a specific force. In this context, this paper presents a novel \emph{manipulability transfer} framework, a method that allows robots to learn and reproduce manipulability ellipsoids from expert demonstrations. The proposed learning scheme is built on a tensor-based formulation of a Gaussian mixture model that takes into account that manipulability ellipsoids lie on the manifold of symmetric positive definite matrices. Learning is coupled with a geometry-aware tracking controller allowing robots to follow a desired profile of manipulability ellipsoids. Extensive evaluations in simulation with redundant manipulators, a robotic hand and humanoids agents, as well as an experiment with two real dual-arm systems validate the feasibility of the approach. Authors: Noémie Jaquier, Leonel Rozo, Darwin G. Caldwell, Sylvain Calinon (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT))