This course investigates how to make mobile robots move in effective, safe, and predictable ways. The basic tool for achieving this is “control theory”, which deals with the question of how dynamical systems, i.e., systems whose behaviors change over time, can be effectively influenced. In the course, these two domains – controls and robotics – will be interleaved and we will go from the basics of control theory, via robotic examples of increasing complexity – all the way to the research frontier. The course will focus on mobile robots as the target application and problems that will be covered include (1) how to make (teams of) wheeled ground robots avoid collisions while reaching target locations, (2) how to make aerial, quadrotor robots follow paths in the presence of severe disturbances, and (3) how to locomotive bipedal, humanoid robots.
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