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Simulating a custom robot going up a ramp in Gazebo [closed]

asked 2011-12-14 18:50:54 -0500

ChickenSoup gravatar image

updated 2016-05-17 02:50:02 -0500

Hi all,

I tried to simulate a custom 4-wheel robot model (URDF) going up a ramp in gazebo but it cannot do so. It can navigate on the ground plane using a custom base controller but when it tries to go up the ramp it gets stuck.

What am I missing in the URDF? Some pointers to implement this is appreciated.

Thank you


Here is my URDF

I still dont have a good grasp of the tags anchor, mechanicalReduction

<robot xmlns:sensor="" xmlns:controller="" xmlns:interface="" xmlns:xacro="" name="my_robot">

<include filename="$(find rover_base_controller)/urdf/materials.urdf.xacro" />

<!-- This adds the laser macro, including the scan for gazebo and link name -->
<include filename="$(find pr2_description)/urdf/sensors/hokuyo_lx30_laser.urdf.xacro" />

<xacro:property name="scale" value="1.0"/>
<xacro:property name="base_length" value="0.6"/>
<xacro:property name="base_width" value="0.3"/>
<xacro:property name="base_height" value="0.1"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base1_length" value="0.02"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base1_width" value="0.02"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base1_height" value="0.07"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base2_length" value="0.02"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base2_width" value="0.05"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base2_height" value="0.01"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base3_length" value="0.02"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base3_width" value="0.02"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_base3_height" value="0.06"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_thickness" value="0.06"/>
<xacro:property name="wheel_radius" value="0.053"/>
<xacro:property name="mast_height" value="0.2"/>
<xacro:property name="mast_length" value="0.01"/>
<xacro:property name="mast_width" value="0.01"/>
<xacro:property name="mast_vertical_bar_height" value="0.01"/>
<xacro:property name="mast_vertical_bar_length" value="0.01"/>
<xacro:property name="mast_vertical_bar_width" value="0.2"/>
<xacro:property name="M_PI" value="3.14159265"/>

<xacro:macro name="default_inertial" params="mass">
        <mass value="${mass}" />
        <inertia ixx="0.01" ixy="0.0" ixz="0.0"
                 iyy="0.01" iyz="0.0"
                 izz="0.01" />

<!-- base_footprint is a fictitious link(frame) that is on the ground right below base_link origin,
         navigation stack depends on this frame -->
    <link name="base_footprint">
            <mass value="0.0001" />
            <origin xyz="0 0 0" />
            <inertia ixx="0.0001" ixy="0.0" ixz="0.0"
                     iyy="0.0001" iyz="0.0"
                     izz="0.0001" />

            <origin xyz="0 0 0" rpy="0 0 0" />
                <box size="0.001 0.001 0.001" />
                <material name="Green"/>

            <origin xyz="0 0 ${wheel_base1_height + wheel_radius}" rpy="0 0 0" />
              <box size="0.001 0.001 0.001" />

<link name="base_link">
            <box size="${base_length*scale} ${base_width*scale} ${base_height*scale}"/>
        <material name="Blue"/>
            <box size="${base_length} ${base_width} ${base_height}"/>
    <xacro:default_inertial mass="50"/>

<joint name="base_footprint_joint" type="fixed">
    <!-- NB: While you would think this would make it go up, it is oddly reversed.
         This moves the joint to 0,0,0 where we want it ...
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Closed for the following reason the question is answered, right answer was accepted by Martin Günther
close date 2016-05-17 03:24:39.226512

1 Answer

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answered 2011-12-15 00:56:46 -0500

DimitriProsser gravatar image

The way I solved this problem was to drastically increase the effort value in the <limit> tag for the wheel joints. I wrote my controller for those wheels using a PID controller (located in the control_toolbox package). I use this PID controller to control the speed of the wheels. Since the controller subscribes to cmd_vel, the PID will continue to increase the motor power to maintain the desired velocity.

You could also try adding the following inside of your transmission descriptions:


You'll have to figure out what value works best for you.

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Thank you very much for your response. Yeah, adjusting those parameters I could get the robot to move; still trying to figure out the best values though.
ChickenSoup gravatar image ChickenSoup  ( 2011-12-18 01:35:21 -0500 )edit
@DimitriProsser I was wondering, however, in the URDF of PR2 base the effort value of <limit> tag is small (100) and there is no <motorTorqueConstant>tag. But it can still go up the ramp while my model cannot. How come it is possible?
ChickenSoup gravatar image ChickenSoup  ( 2011-12-18 16:41:22 -0500 )edit
Perhaps a value of 100 is sufficient with a properly tuned PID controller.
DimitriProsser gravatar image DimitriProsser  ( 2011-12-19 00:21:21 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2011-12-14 18:50:54 -0500

Seen: 1,261 times

Last updated: May 17 '16