Context: this post-doctoral offer completes an existing PHD offer that was funded in 2010. The objectives of the PHD are to model, design and build an articulated mobile robot with four independent suspended driving wheels (ROBCAT), capable to move at high speed (10 m/s) on rough terrain and to land on its wheels in case of unexpected take off on a complex obstacle. This vehicle would be capable to mimic the cat twist from information provided by on-board sensors measuring the wheel speeds and the absolute and relative orientations of the front and rear axles.
This work on the aerial phase of motion is the natural extension of the ANR FAST national project, supposed to end in 2011, and more focused on ground displacements. The FAST project allowed to develop a mobile robot equipped with innovative suspensions.
Subject: the subject of this post-doctoral work is mainly focused on the aerial stabilization of pitch angle thanks to the mobility of the wheels. Starting from the robot prototype developed during the FAST project, a new robot named ROBCAT will have to be designed and equipped with various sensors (inertial sensors for body and wheels) connected to an embedded acquisition system and dedicated to measure real values of the kinematic parameters used in the aerial model. The proprioceptive measures will be completed with exteroceptive measures provided by a fast video camera recording all the phases of standardized jumps. The robot will also be equipped with separated controls for front and rear axles (accelerator, brakes), allowing an experimental validation of the influences of the controls on the vehicle behavior during the aerial phase. After several experiments and simulations of the general model, it should be possible to control the front and rear axles depending on the inertial information provided by proprioceptive sensors.
Possible Extension: to integrate active suspensions in the mechanical model and on the ROBCAT robot in order to study their influence before taking off on the angular momentum of the robot during aerial phases. Suspension motions and motors motions could be combined before and during aerial phases.
Applications: ROBCAT, fast rolling robot for rough terrains, has many potential applications: agriculture, exploration, safety, demining, emergency aid...
Duration: 12 months. Starts in 2011 as soon as possible
– Less than 35 year old
– Coming from a lab located out of France
– With knowledge in multibody dynamic modeling
– Capable to design mechatronics systems and mobile robots (mechanical design, control, electronics, computing)
– With good expertise in the field of experimental robotics, embedded sensors and camera vision.