Why does my contact sensor publish irregularly?

asked 2021-03-06 15:54:26 -0600

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I'm very new to ros, gazebo etc and I'm having trouble that I think arises from lack of understanding of how the subscriber/publisher work with regards the libgazebo_ros_bumper.so contact sensor I have implemented.

I have implemented the contact sensor with a few different <update_rate> values, and had a subscriber print the ContactsState states information. At 1KHz update this is usually just one ContactState message (described as in the debug message as i:0/1), with a variable number of sets of contact points reported. However, sometimes it will have two ContactState messages (i:0/2 and i:1/2) that are time stamped a millisecond apart. At higher update rates, the number of ContactState messages within a given ContactsState message varies. Is this simply the contact sensor "saving up" its ContactState messages until it publishes them all in a single ContactsState message, from oldest to newest? If so, why are the number of ContactState messages so variable when the time between updates remains the same?

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