Exploiting the interaction between motion trajectory and grasp stability for smarter robot control

MSc assignment

Robotics systems are often designed using a 'divide and conquer' approach where individual subsystems do not share much information between each other during operation. This facilitates ease of design, but might leave possible performance on the table. This also includes grippers, which are generally seen as 'passive' elements once grasp has been established. After grasp is established, the motion control deals with specific fixed properties deemed appropriate for the type of gripper and produce being manipulated.

Although the grasping operation and the motion control are often treated as seperate entities, in reality there might be advantages to be gained from interaction between these two systems. This can be in the form of sharing knowledge and adjusting behavior on each others states. During the assignment you could for example use sensory information in the gripper to deduce the contact forces and hence balance the motion control, leading to minimized cycle times or increasing the reliability of grasp. Another possibility could be feed forwarding information about the (known) trajectory to properly adjust the contact forces to keep stable grasp, whilst minimizing the possibility of damage to produce. During the assignment you will have the freedom to explore and choose what you think might be the best way forward.

*The goal of this assignment is thus to investigate using information of grasp to actively adjust the control of the robot, and vice versa.*
(Possible) topics include:
- Literature research into the state-of-the-art
- Development of various concepts of how gripping and motion control might exchange information and interact with each other
- Simulations to illustrate the concept working using ROS
- Experimental validation by implementing the suggested changes on anactual serial robot arm