Failure-tolerant path planning for kinematically redundant manipulators anticipating locked-joint failures

Rodrigo S. Jamisola, Anthony A. Maciejewski, Rodney G. Roberts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)


This work considers kinematic failure tolerance when obstacles are present in the environment. It addresses the issue of finding a collision-free path such that a redundant robot can successfully move from a start to a goal position and/or orientation in the workspace despite any single locked-joint failure at any time. An algorithm is presented that searches for a simply-connected, obstacle-free surface with no internal local minimum or maximum in the configuration space that guarantees the existence of a solution. The method discussed is based on the following assumptions: a robot is redundant relative to its task, only a single locked-joint failure occurs at any given time, the robot is capable of detecting a joint failure and immediately locks the failed joint, and the environment is static and known. The technique is illustrated on a seven degree-of-freedom commercially available redundant robot. Although developed and illustrated for a single degree of redundancy, it is possible to extend the algorithm to higher degrees of redundancy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)603-612
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Robotics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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