Virtual-Sensor-Based Planetary Soil Classification with Legged Robots

  • Shuang WuEmail author
  • Lei Chen
  • Bin Liu
  • Chu Wang
  • Qingqing Wei
  • Yaobing Wang
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 11743)


The estimation of soil properties is crucial for legged robots during planetary exploration missions. A virtual-sensor-based soil classification approach for legged robots is proposed in this paper. Instead of installing extra force sensors on the foot of the robot, joint motion information from joint position sensors and current signals from joint motors on the leg are recorded and used as the dataset in classification. The collected data is decomposed using the Discrete Wavelet Transform and assigned a soil type by a Support Vector Machine (SVM). This approach is validated on a dataset acquired from a high-fidelity simulation model of a hexapod robot, and the classification accuracy of more than 90% was achieved. Different SVM models are used in classification for comparative analysis, and the contributions of the different signals to the classification performance are evaluated. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed approach can estimate the soil properties with a good performance and rapid forecasting speed.


Soil classification Virtual sensor Legged robots 



This research was supported in part by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51875393) and by the China Advance Research for Manned Space Project (No. 030601).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shuang Wu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Lei Chen
    • 1
  • Bin Liu
    • 1
  • Chu Wang
    • 1
  • Qingqing Wei
    • 1
  • Yaobing Wang
    • 1
  1. 1.Beijing Key Laboratory of Intelligent Space Robotic System Technology and ApplicationsBeijing Institute of Spacecraft System EngineeringBeijingChina

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