Latest Papers

ASME Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics

    Deep Reinforcement Learning-Based Control of Stewart Platform With Parametric Simulation in ROS and Gazebo

    Abstract

    The Stewart platform is an entirely parallel robot with mechanical differences from typical serial robotic manipulators, which has a wide application area ranging from flight and driving simulators to structural test platforms. This work concentrates on learning to control a complex model of the Stewart platform using state-of-the-art deep reinforcement learning (DRL) algorithms. In this regard, to enhance the reliability of the learning performance and to have a test bed capable of mimicking the behavior of the system completely, a precisely designed simulation environment is presented. Therefore, we first design a parametric representation for the kinematics of the Stewart platform in Gazebo and robot operating system (ROS) and integrate it with a Python class to conveniently generate the structures in simulation description format (SDF). Then, to control the system, we benefit from three DRL algorithms: the asynchronous advantage actor–critic (A3C), the deep deterministic policy gradient (DDPG), and the proximal policy optimization (PPO) to learn the control gains of a proportional integral derivative (PID) controller for a given reaching task. We chose to apply these algorithms due to the Stewart platform’s continuous action and state spaces, making them well-suited for our problem, where exact controller tuning is a crucial task. The simulation results show that the DRL algorithms can successfully learn the controller gains, resulting in satisfactory control performance.

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    Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics Open Issues