Form 9.B Project Summary





18.02-6650 Project Title:

MCSM: A control strategy for

holonomic/nonholonomic robot systems

Technical Abstract (Limit 200 words)

The proposed innovation is mobile-camera-space

manipulation (MCSM), a strategy to control robot

systems with a combination of holonomic and

nonholonomic degrees of freedom (DOFs), such as

a rover equipped with a low-DOF arm. MCSM will

control both the rover and the arm to move the end

effector to a target in 3D space. MSCM will be an

extension of camera-space manipulation (CSM), a

proven estimation-based control strategy which

controls tasks in physical space by achieving task

objectives in camera-space. CSM's advantages

include being calibration-free, robust, and highly

accurate, but CSM requires cameras at fixed

positions, limiting its use for mobile systems with

large working areas. MCSM will control the rover

and the onboard low-DOF robotic arm, using

cameras fixed to the rover, to accomplish higher

DOF tasks than either could achieve individually.

MCSM could function in autonomous or supervised

control modes without performance degradation due

to delay times. The innovation responds to

Subsection 18.02, giving rovers more flexibility,

robustness, and accuracy for Sampling,

Deployment, and Retrieval tasks by allowing

rovers with low-DOF arms to achieve high-DOF

tasks such as sample grasping, coring, deployment,

storage, and retrieval of stored samples.

Potential Commercial Applications (Limit 200 words)

The proposed innovation will allow mobile

(nonholonomic) systems equipped with holonomic

degrees of freedom (such as rovers equipped with

arms, forklifts, earthmoving equipment, etc.) to be

controlled accurately, semi-autonomously, and

robustly. In addition, by combining both the degrees

of freedom of both subsystems, higher DOF tasks

can be accomplished without the need to add

additional holonomic degrees of freedom, which

would add cost, complexity, and weight. This system

would be ideal in two major several settings:

1) Control of rovers equipped with arms in order to

acquire or manipulate samples during exploration of

hostile environments, including Mars, deserts,

arctic environments, hazardous material storage

facilities, nuclear power plants, and potentially


2) Semi-autonomous control of industrial equipment

such as forklifts for automated warehousing,

earthmoving equipment, farm equipment, etc. In

this case the innovation could be used both in new

equipment and as a retrofit for older equipment.

The increased accuracy and reduced labor costs are

two major advantages of this approach. If addition,

such equipment could be controlled remotely for

work in hazardous areas, and one operator could

control several pieces of equipment, increasing


Name and Address of Principal Investigator (Name,

Organization Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)

Dr. John-David Yoder

Yoder Software, Inc.

3100 Benham Avenue

Elkhart , IN 46517

Name and Address of Offeror (Firm Name, Mail Address,


Dr. John-David Yoder

Yoder Software, Inc.

3100 Benham Avenue

Elkhart , IN 46517