Whole-body motion planning is a key ability for legged robots, which allows for the generation of terrain adaptive behaviors and thereby improved mobility in complex environment. To this end, this paper addresses the issue of terrain geometry based whole-body motion planning for a six-legged robot over a rugged terrain. The whole-body planning is decomposed into two sub-tasks: leg support and swing. For leg support planning, the target pose of the robot torso in a walking step is first found by maximizing the stability margin at the moment of support-swing transition and matching the orientation of the support polygon formed by target footholds. Then, the torso and thereby the leg support trajectories are generated using cubic spline interpolation and transferred into joint space through inverse kinematics. In terms of leg swing planning, the trajectories in a walking step are generated by solving an optimal problem that satisfies three constraints and a bioinspired objective function. The proposed whole-body motion planning strategies are implemented with a simulation and a real-world six-legged robot, and the results show that stable and collision-free motions can be produced for the robot over rugged terrains.
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