Control a Bipedal Humanoid Robot Using NI LabVIEW

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1 Control a Bipedal Humanoid Robot Using NI LabVIEW Segment: Academic Country: Singapore Author(s): Wee Teck Chew, Kang Biao, Qu Sai and Zhang Lu, School of Engineering, Temasek Polytechnic Product: NI LabVIEW Professional Development System NI LabVIEW control design and simulation module NI LabVIEW MathScript Real-Time Module Robotics module Vision Acquisition Software Vision Development Module Internet toolkit NI USB-6210 NI PXI-8101 NI USB-8473 Category: Academic, Robotics; Machine Control; Advanced Research Challenge: To control and generate smooth walking gait for a bipedal humanoid robot using LabVIEW Solution: Combining the capabilities of NI LabVIEW graphical programming structure advantages and NI USB products to develop a user friendly graphic interface, that produce a synchronized joint movement, read sensory data feedback, process the information, and generate a smooth walking gait for the bipedal robot. The walking gaits are implemented on a mid-size (1.6 meter, 55 kg) bipedal robot. Experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of the NI LabVIEW graphical programming and its hardware interfacing capability. Introduction This paper presents the objectives, the scope of work and the NI LabVIEW programming methodologies under taken by our research team from School of Engineering, Temasek Polytechnic. The development of bipedal humanoid robots began more than thirty years ago. A stable walking motion in a bipedal

2 humanoid robot requires effective gait balancing and robust posture correction algorithms. Despite the several research efforts, it is still an extremely challenging task to develop and implement intelligent motion algorithms to control a bipedal robot, particularly with regards to adaptability, robustness and stability of the robot. Motivation and Objectives The control of a bipedal humanoid robot is a challenging task due to its difficult-to-stabilize constrained dynamic characteristics, especially with its walking gaits trajectories. The motivation and objectives of this project are: To develop and implement a user friendly graphical interface to implement control algorithm to produce a stable static and dynamic walking posture. To design and build a teen-size bipedal humanoid robot for both educational learning and academic research. Shortcomings and limitations of our initial approach Our initial approach is to use ROS, an open source C++ base programming language. After a few weeks of testing and evaluation, we realized that the learning curve is steep for students without solid programming foundation, and debugging the codes is also challenging. One of our objectives is to implement a user friendly programming platform for educational learning. Furthermore, the ROS is not a Realtime OS, though it is possible to integrate ROS with real-time code. Our successful approach Finally, our team decided to use NI LabVIEW to develop the control software, because it is user friendly, students can visualize and debug the code easily. Using the NI hardware, NI LabVIEW real-time software, third party add-ons, learning resources and training materials from NI website, our team is able to develop a user friendly graphical interface and the hardware platform within one semester, to demonstrate the bipedal robot walking motion, and achieve our objectives. System Configuration: Overall System Architecture The overall architecture is as depicted in Figure 1. The main controller is NI-PXI-8101; NI LabVIEW modules are used to control the entire hardware interface. The wireless LAN is programmed using the NI LabVIEW Internet toolkit. The Force/Torque sensor data is captured using NI-USB We evaluated and designed our motion simulations using NI SoftMotion for SolidWorks to perform motion study. NI SoftMotion axes were used to create and configured the robot joints in the SolidWorks assembly, and use NI SoftMotion function blocks to create the motion trajectories. The MATLAB codes to generate gait trajectory was executed using NI LabVIEW MathScript and this simplified cross-platform software installation difficulties.

3 Figure 1: The bipedal robot overall system architecture. Hardware architecture The hardware architecture is as depicted in Figure 2. The main controller is NI PXI-810; the communication between the motors drivers is through CANBus using NI USB The Force/Torque and other sensory data are connected to two NI USB-6210s and to provide feedback to the controller unit.

4 Figure 2: Robot hardware architecture. Software architecture The software architecture is depicted in Figure 3. The NI LabVIEW graphic programming development environment is user friendly and come with a lot of third party library support. The communication between the sub-modules was through CANbus protocol. The USBcam vision system module was developed using the NI Vision Acquisition Software and NI Vision Development Module. The data transmission between the base station and the bipedal robot was implemented using the NI Internet toolkit, the toolkit is efficient and this reduced our development time.

5 Figure 3: Robot software architecture. Conclusion NI LabVIEW development system provided a total design solution for our project, it is possible to perform motion simulate with SolidWorks and able to execute MATLAB codes on LabVIEW graphical programming platform. The software and hardware architecture was successful developed and implemented on the bipedal robot in one semester; experiments showed that the overall system works well. The development time has significantly reduced by using NI off-the-shelf products and third party support libraries. With the LabVIEW graphical programming approach, students are able to develop and debug program easily and also identify the problems quickly. This achieves our objects of developing an effective educational learning robotics platform for students with entry level programming background. The robot was on display during the SRG2014 Singapore robotic game. Video Author Information: Wee Teck Chew School of Engineering Temasek Polytechnic 21 Tampines Ave 1 Singapore

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