Directional singularity-robust torque control for gyroscopic actuators

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    Gyroscopic actuation is appealing for wearable applications due to its ability to impart free moments on a body without exoskeletal structures on the joints.We recently proposed an unobtrusive balancing aid consisting of multiple parallelmounted control moment gyroscopes (CMGs) contained within a backpack-like orthopedic corset. Using conventional CMG control techniques, geometric singularities result in a number of performance issues, including either unintended oscillations or freezing of the gimbals at certain alignments, which are typically mitigated by the addition of redundant actuators or by allowing errors in the generated moment; however, because of the minimalistic design of the proposed device and focus on accurate moment tracking, a new methodology is required. In this paper, a control scheme is proposed for non-redundant CMG systems in which oscillations at saturated states are avoided and all remaining singularities are efficiently escaped by exploiting the system geometry; due to its use of classification-specific singularity proximity measures that account for the command moment orientation, it is named the directional singularity-robust (DSR) control law. The performance of this control law is assessed in both simulations and hardware testing. The proposed method is suitable for a wide range of CMG systems, including both balancing and aerospace applications.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2755 - 2763
    JournalIEEE - ASME Transactions on Mechatronics
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Bibliographical note

    Accepted Author Manuscript


    • control moment gyroscope (CMG)
    • fall prevention
    • torque control
    • wearable robotics


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