Real-time Continuous Collision Detection for Mobile Manipulators - A General Approach

Holger Täubig, Berthold Bäuml, Udo Frese

In: Proceedings of the IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots. IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots (Humanoids-12) Humanoids and Humans: Towards A New Frontier November 29-December 1 Osaka Japan IEEE 2012.


We present a general real-time continuous collision detection algorithm for arbitrary systems of moving bodies connected to each other in a kinematic tree of joints. Here “joint” as a general term refers to the measured relative motion between two bodies, which may be physically connected or not. We provide a basic set of joints covering revolute and prismatic joints, vehicle motion, and 3d positioning which is sufficient for many applications in particular those involved with mobile manipulators, e.g. industrial and humanoid robots, intelligent transportation systems, or equipment at construction sites. Each joint implementation either operates on a motion bound (an interval covering the braking distance) or an uncertainty bound (measurement error) and computes a volume that spatially bounds the effect of that motion or uncertainty. Aggregating all joints in a kinematic tree then yields a conservative continuous collision detection for the complex and uncertain motion of the whole system. We further present an augmented reality visualization that overlays the collision volumes into the live image of a camera, which can be used to validate the collision model before bringing a system into service.

Taubig2012_HUMANOIDS.pdf (pdf, 3 MB ) HUMANOIDS2012_final.mp4 (mp4, 24 MB )

Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence