Introduction to Arm-Type Robots (engl.)

This course will cover the fundamental concepts, mathematics, and algorithms relevant to serial robot linkages, i.e., legs, arms, necks, fingers, and toes. Among other topics, we will discuss:
  • Position Kinematics,
  • Velocity Kinematics,
  • Singularity Analysis,
  • Linkage Dynamics,
  • Linkage Control,
  • Coordinated Motion,
  • Building Robotic Creatures,
  • Grasping and Walking.
The course is based on the book "Robotics, Vision and Control" by Peter Corke (see Additional Material)

Lecture Notes and Video Recordings

Video recordings of the lectures will be made available some days after each lecture.
The Matlab scripts used in the lecture are available too.
    1. Representing Position and Orientation
    2. Poses in 2D
    3. Poses in 3D
    1. Smooth One-Dimensional Trajectories
    2. Multi-Dimensional Trajectories
    3. Time-Varying Coordinate Frames
    1. Describing Robot Arms
    2. Forward Kinematics
    3. Inverse Kinematics
    4. Trajectories
    1. Introduction to Jacobians
    2. Manipulator Jacobian
    3. Motion Control
    4. Force Mappings
    5. Numerical Inverse Kinematics
    1. Introduction to Dynamics


Solving and submitting the exercises in the book and in the following exercise sheets is recommended but not mandatory to be admitted to the final exam. There are no bonus points.

We recommend solving at least the following exercises to ensure you understood the main concepts (and to be prepared for the exam):
  • Chapter 2: Book exercises 1, 2, 3, 5; extra exercise 12
  • Chapter 3: Book exercises 3, 4, 5; extra exercises 10, 13
  • Chapter 7: Book exercises 2, 3, 5; extra exercises 8, 9
  • Chapter 8: Book exercises 1, 2, 4; extra exercise 6

If you want to get feedback on your solutions, you can hand them in during the lecture or consult us directly. The lectures on 16.7. and 19.7. will be dedicated to the exercises.

Additional Material

  1. Peter Corke: Robotics, Vision and Control. You can access this book on its Springer web page by logging in "via Shibboleth or Athens" and selecting the University of Freiburg. Then use your university account to login.
  2. Errata (known errors) page for the above book
  3. The course will make use of the Robotics Toolbox for Matlab that accompanies the book.
  4. If you take the lecture (including the exam), you may buy the student version of Matlab from the Mathworks web page and we will reimburse your expense. Contact Felix Endres for details.
  5. Short animation explaining several of the toolbox's functions to create rotation matrices.