Collision-Free Trajectory Planning for a 6-DoF Free Floating Space Robot via Hierarchical Decoupling Optimization

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4953-4960
Journal / PublicationIEEE Robotics and Automation Letters
Issue number2
Online published22 Feb 2022
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2022


Collision-free trajectory planning is a critical technique for space robot mission. In this paper, we developed a model-free Hierarchical Decoupling Optimization (HDO) algorithm to realize 6D-pose multi-target trajectory planning for the free-floating space robot. In order to reduce the complexity of exploration, the whole system consists of two layers: the high-level policy completes the collision-free trajectory planning of the pose of end-effector; the low-level policy divides the task of reaching arbitrary pose into two decoupling sub-tasks (position and orientation) within a large target space. By introducing the Hindsight Experience Replay (HER), we successfully trained two agents based on multi-goal reinforcement learning. We proposed an Event-based Alternating Optimization (EAO) to stabilize the training and efficiently approximate the optimal policy. Theoretical analysis shows EAO can guarantee the learning stability and reachability of the equilibrium point. The simulation results illustrate that the proposed algorithm achieves high environmental adaptability and anti-disturbance capacity. Furthermore, we demonstrate our proposed method in a practical space mission by applying it to capture a target satellite. Qualitative results (videos) are available at 1.

Research Area(s)

  • Aerospace electronics, Collision avoidance, End effectors, Optimization, Reinforcement Learning, Robots, Space Robotics, Trajectory, Trajectory Planning, Trajectory planning