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Combined Sampling and Optimization Based Planning for Legged-Wheeled Robots

04/09/2021
by   Edo Jelavić, et al.
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Planning for legged-wheeled machines is typically done using trajectory optimization because of many degrees of freedom, thus rendering legged-wheeled planners prone to falling prey to bad local minima. We present a combined sampling and optimization-based planning approach that can cope with challenging terrain. The sampling-based stage computes whole-body configurations and contact schedule, which speeds up the optimization convergence. The optimization-based stage ensures that all the system constraints, such as non-holonomic rolling constraints, are satisfied. The evaluations show the importance of good initial guesses for optimization. Furthermore, they suggest that terrain/collision (avoidance) constraints are more challenging than the robot model's constraints. Lastly, we extend the optimization to handle general terrain representations in the form of elevation maps.

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