A 3D dynamic model of a spherical wheeled self-balancing robot
Mobility through balancing on spherical wheels has recently received some attention in the robotics literature. Unlike traditional wheeled platforms, the operation of such platforms depends heavily on understanding and working with system dynamics, which have so far been approximated with simple planar models and their decoupled extension to three dimensions. Unfortunately, such models cannot capture inherently spatial aspects of motion such as yaw motion arising from the wheel rolling motion or coupled inertial effects for fast maneuvers. In this paper, we describe a novel, fully-coupled 3D model for such spherical wheeled platforms and show that it not only captures relevant spatial aspects of motion, but also provides a basis for controllers better informed by system dynamics. We focus our evaluations to simulations with this model and use circular paths to reveal advantages of this model in dynamically rich situations. © 2012 IEEE.