School of Computer Science

Module 06-25021 (2017)

Advanced Robotics

Level 4/M

Morteza Azad Semester 2 20 credits
Co-ordinator: Morteza Azad
Reviewer: Ales Leonardis

The Module Description is a strict subset of this Syllabus Page.


This module is concerned with robot planning and control in a physical world. We will introduce the concepts and tools for modelling, simulating, and controlling robots with respect to dynamics. In a series of lectures we will study the fundamental and advanced techniques for controlling a robot in a real environment l. Lab exercises will reinforce learned concepts by means of evaluation on a (real/simulated) physical robot.


The aims of this module are to:

  • give an appreciation of the issues that arise when controlling dynamic robots, such as manipulators
  • provide an understanding of the methods and techniques used to model and control dynamic robots
  • give hands on experience for designing, implementing and testing motion controllers
  • encourage independent thought on scientific issues related to robot motion and control

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student should be able to:

  1. Develop and formulate models of a robot moving in a real environment.
  2. Implement algorithms for solving robot planning or control problems.
  3. Investigate and analyse control methods for robot motion (on a simulator or real robot).
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of the main methods of modelling and controlling robots in real environments.



Teaching methods

2 hrs lectures per week, laboratory sessions

Contact Hours:



Sessional: 2 hour examination (70%) Continuous assessment (team project) (30%).

Supplementary (where allowed): Examination (70%) (with 30% CA carried over).

Detailed Syllabus

  1. Introduction
    • overview
    • introduction to manipulation
    • types of sensors/actuators
  2. Kinematics
    • coordinate transformation
    • rotations
    • quaternions
    • homogenous transforms
    • Denavit-Hartenberg notation
  3. Inverse Kinematics
    • redundancy
    • Jacobians
    • singularities
    • manipulability
  4. Trajectory Planning
    • joint space vs task space
    • cubic/quintic splines
  5. Dynamics
    • Lagrange formulation
    • Newton Euler formulation
    • Simulation
    • Inertial parameter identification
    • Operational space dynamics
    • Constraint dynamics
  6. Control
    • joint space control
    • computed torque control
    • gravity compensation
    • inverse dynamics control
    • operational space control
    • force control
    • constraint control
    • impedance control

Programmes containing this module