RobCoGen: a code generator for efficient kinematics and dynamics of articulated robots, based on Domain Specific Languages

Marco Frigerio, Jonas Buchli, Darwin G. Caldwell, Claudio Semini


This paper presents the Robotics Code Generator (RobCoGen), an open source program that can generate an efficient
implementation of rigid body dynamics and kinematics algorithms for articulated robots, such as humanoids and manipulators. New
Domain Specific Languages (DSLs) for the specification of robot models and coordinate transforms lie at the core of our software. The
technology of DSL s and code generation allows users to deal only with high level information (like a robot model), and relieves them
from low level coding of critical routines. The generated code is efficient, tailored to each robot and suitable for applications ranging
from simulations to hard real time robot control. This paper describes the rationale and the development of RobCoGen, as well as
experiments that include comparisons with other programs: results show a comparable efficiency with code optimized using symbolic
simplification (average execution time ratio of 1.22 with SD - FAST ) and better performance than a general purpose library (ratio of 3.24
with RBDL ). Efficiency, however, is not our only design criteria. RobCoGen compares positively with existing tools also in terms of
flexibility and ease of use.

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