Tracking for Fully Actuated Mechanical Systems: A Geometric Framework

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Francesco Bullo and Richard M. Murray
Automatica 35: (1) 17-34

We present a general framework for the control of Lagrangian systems with as many inputs as degrees of freedom. Relying on the geometry of mechanical systems on manifolds, we propose a design algorithm for the tracking problem. The notion of error function and transport map lead to a proper definition of configuration and velocity error. These are the crucial ingredients in designing a proportional derivative feedback and feedforward controller. The proposed approach includes as special cases a variety of results on control of manipulators, pointing devices and autonomous vehicles. Our design provides particular insight into both aerospace and underwater applications where the configuration manifold is a Lie group.