A Bio-Inspired Robotic Mechanism for Autonomous Locomotion in Unconventional Environments

  • Darío Maravall
  • Javier de Lope
Part of the Studies in Fuzziness and Soft Computing book series (STUDFUZZ, volume 116)


This chapter presents a robotic mechanism aimed at navigating in unconventional environments like rigid aerial lines — power, telephone, railroad — and reticulated structures — ladders, grills, bars, etc —. A novel method of obstacle avoidance for this mechanism is also introduced. The computation of collision-free trajectories generally requires the analytical description of the physical structure of the environment and the solution of the kinematic equations. For dynamic, uncertain environments with unknown obstacles, however, it is very hard to get realtime collision avoidance by means of analytical techniques. The main strength of the proposed method resides, precisely, in that it departs from the analytical approach, as it does not use formal descriptions of the location and shape of the obstacles, nor does it solve the kinematic equations of the mechanism. Instead, the method follows the perception-reason-action paradigm and is based on a reinforcement learning process guided by perceptual feedback, which can be considered as biologically inspired at the functional level. From this perspective, obstacle avoidance is modeled as a multi-objective optimization problem. The method, as shown in the chapter, can be straightforwardly applied to real-time collision avoidance for articulated mechanisms, including conventional manipulator arms.


Performance Index Reinforcement Learning Performance Function Collision Avoidance Obstacle Avoidance 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Darío Maravall
    • 1
  • Javier de Lope
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Artificial Intelligence Faculty of Computer ScienceUniversidad Politécnica de Madrid Campus de MontegancedoMadridSpain

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