Proxy-based Position Control of Manipulators with Passive Compliant Actuators: Stability Analysis and Experiments

Navvab Kashiri, Jinoh Lee, Nikos Tsagarakis, Michael Van Damme, Bram Vanderborght, Darwin Caldwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


In this work we introduce a position control scheme which is targeted at the
enhancement of the safety of compliant joint robots. In addition to the necessity
for accuracy and robustness that both serve as prerequisites for the successful
performance of these tasks, the ability to safely handle unexpected events, such
as communication failures or unintended interactions which may endanger the
robot/human safety, is a paramount requirement. To achieve a smooth motion
behaviour of compliant systems under these circumstances, damping control
actions are essential. To this end, a novel proxy-based approach for compliant
joint robots, integrated into a passivity-guaranteed controller, is proposed. The
stability analysis of the proposed scheme is presented and the global asymptotic
convergence, as well as the passivity of the control scheme, is analytically proven.
The performance of the proposed approach is practically evaluated by means of
experiments on a spatial robotic arm with passive compliant actuators, and is
compared with that of a classical PD approach. Experimental results validate
the ability of the proposed approach to inject damping in order to provide
smooth and damped recovery when an interruption in task execution occurs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)398-408
JournalRobotics and Autonomous Systems
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Compliant Joints
  • Position Control
  • Proxy-based Sliding Mode Control
  • Flexible Joint Manipulators.


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