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DOI: 10.3390/s22062295
OpenAccess: Gold
This work has “Gold” OA status. This means it is published in an Open Access journal that is indexed by the DOAJ.

Fast Kinematic Re-Calibration for Industrial Robot Arms

Sreekanth Kana,Juhi Gurnani,Vishal Ramanathan,Sri Harsha Turlapati,Mohammad Zaidi Ariffin,Domenico Campolo

Accurate kinematic modelling is pivotal in the safe and reliable execution of both contact and non-contact robotic applications. The kinematic models provided by robot manufacturers are valid only under ideal conditions and it is necessary to account for the manufacturing errors, particularly the joint offsets introduced during the assembling stages, which is identified as the underlying problem for position inaccuracy in more than 90% of the situations. This work was motivated by a very practical need, namely the discrepancy in terms of end-effector kinematics as computed by factory-calibrated internal controller and the nominal kinematic model as per robot datasheet. Even though the problem of robot calibration is not new, the focus is generally on the deployment of external measurement devices (for open loop calibration) or mechanical fixtures (for closed loop calibration). On the other hand, we use the factory-calibrated controller as an ‘oracle’ for our fast-recalibration approach. This allows extracting calibrated intrinsic parameters (e.g., link lengths) otherwise not directly available from the ‘oracle’, for use in ad-hoc control strategies. In this process, we minimize the kinematic mismatch between the ideal and the factory-calibrated robot models for a Kinova Gen3 ultra-lightweight robot by compensating for the joint zero position error and the possible variations in the link lengths. Experimental analysis has been presented to validate the proposed method, followed by the error comparison between the calibrated and un-calibrated models over training and test sets.

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