CS327A: Advanced Robotic Manipulation

This course focuses on advanced control methodologies and novel design techniques for complex human-like robotic systems. It provides an extensive coverage of the task- oriented operational space formulation, and discusses its application to the challenges of interactive whole-body control of humanoid robots. The presentation of the material starts with the basic models and control structure of a simple robot arm and culminates with the most recent developments on the control of humanoid robots. The framework addresses various challenging problems, which include: (i) the motion coordination of the large number of degrees of humanoid robots; (ii) the effective control of their contacts and interactions with the environment; (iii) the maintenance of their internal and external constraints; (iv) and the strategies for dealing with their underactuation and balance. The above issues are all treated in a unified fashion within a general control structure that addresses the whole body dynamics for specifications involving multiple distributed tasks and postures in consistency with the requirements of multiple distributed contacts and constraints. Other fundamental issues in human centered robotics will be also examined in this course. These include: (i) the synthesis of human movements to produce human- like robot behaviors; (ii) the critical issue of robot safety and the design requirements for human-friendly robots that conceived to operate in human environments (iii) the elastic planning methodology for real-time modifications of existing motion plans; (iv) and various other efficient algorithms that address the computational challenges associated with human-like robotic structures. In addition to the lectures, this course includes reviews of papers on wide range of topics relevant to advanced robotics. These reviews, which are done by groups of students, will be presented at a mini- symposium held at the end of the quarter.


Mon, Wed 3.00-4.20pm.
Gates B12.

Course Reader

Available at the Bookstore starting Friday Apr 5.

Office Hours

See below at Staff section.


Please sign up on Piazza .


Homework: 30%
Symposium Topic Presentation: 20%
Final (take-home): 50%


4 assignments.
All must be submitted in order to receive a grade. Late submissions require approval.
Due @ midnight on Gradescope.


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Oussama Khatib


Office hours : After class, 4:30-5:30p
Gates 144
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Elena Galbally

Course Assistant

Office hours : Tue, Thu 3-4p (starting Apr 9)
Gates B21


Date Lecture Handouts Homework (tentative schedule)
Mon, Apr 1 Course introduction
Wed, Apr 3 Kinematics, Dynamics [Lecture2-KinematicsAndDynamics.pdf]
Mon, Apr 8 Operational space formulation [Lecture3-4-OpSpace.pdf]
Mon, Apr 8 IMPORTANT: sofware setup session 4:30pm-6pm
Wed, Apr 10 Op.space & Unified Motion/ Force control [Lecture4-5-UnifiedMotionForceControl.pdf] Homework 1 out (Due Apr 19)
Mon, Apr 15 Unified Motion/ Force control
Wed, Apr 17 Redundancy [Lecture6-Redundancy.pdf] Homework 2 out Saturday 20th (Due May 4)
Mon, Apr 22 Inertial Properties [Lecture7-InertialProperties.pdf]
Wed, Apr 24 Cooperative Robots [Lecture7-CooperativeRobotics.pdf]
Mon, Apr 29 Mobile Manipulation and Humanoids [Lecture8-9-Mobile&Humanoids.pdf]
Wed, May 1 Humanoids
Mon, May 6 Humanoids & Planning [Lecture10-11-ElasticPlanning.pdf] Homework 3 out (Due May 11)
Wed, May 8 Elastic Planning
Mon, May 13 Human-Friendly Design [Lecture12-HumanFriendly.pdf] Homework 4 out (due May 25)
Wed, May 15 Interaction in the Lab
Mon, May 20 Perception: 3D vision (Guest Lecture by Harlyn Baker)
Wed, May 22 Haptic Design (Guest Lecture by Margot Vulliez)
Mon, May 27 Holiday (Memorial Day)
Wed, May 29 Robot Skill Acquisition and Learning (Guest Lecture by Elena Galbally)
Mon, June 3 Review Discussion
Wed, June 5 Advanced Topics
Fri, June 7 Mini-Symposium (Location: Gates 176)
Fri, June 7 - Mon, June 10 Take-home Final