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Advances in Robotics Research
  Volume 2, Number 2, June 2018, pages 113-127
open access

ROS-based control for a robot manipulator with a demonstration of the ball-on-plate task
Khasim A. Khan, Revanth R. Konda and Ji-Chul Ryu

    Robotics and automation are rapidly growing in the industries replacing human labor. The idea of robots replacing humans is positively influencing the business thereby increasing its scope of research. This paper discusses the development of an experimental platform controlled by a robotic arm through Robot Operating System (ROS). ROS is an open source platform over an existing operating system providing various types of robots with advanced capabilities from an operating system to low-level control. We aim in this work to control a 7-DOF manipulator arm (Robai Cyton Gamma 300) equipped with an external vision camera system through ROS and demonstrate the task of balancing a ball on a plate-type end effector. In order to perform feedback control of the balancing task, the ball is designed to be tracked using a camera (Sony PlayStation Eye) through a tracking algorithm written in C++ using OpenCV libraries. The joint actuators of the robot are servo motors (Dynamixel) and these motors are directly controlled through a low-level control algorithm. To simplify the control, the system is modeled such that the plate has two-axis linearized motion. The developed system along with the proposed approaches could be used for more complicated tasks requiring more number of joint control as well as for a testbed for students to learn ROS with control theories in robotics.
Key Words
    robot operating system (ROS); robot manipulator; balancing control; ball-on-plate system
Khasim A. Khan, Revanth R. Konda and Ji-Chul Ryu: Department of Mechanical Engineering, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL 60115, U.S.A.

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