CPG-based control of a turtle-like underwater vehicle

Keehong Seo, Soon Jo Chung, Jean Jacques E. Slotine

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


We present a new bio-inspired control strategy for an autonomous underwater vehicle by constructing coupled nonlinear oscillators, similar to the animal central pattern generators (CPGs). Using contraction theory, we show that the network of oscillators globally converges to a specific pattern of oscillation. We experimentally validate the proposed control law using a turtle-like underwater vehicle, whose fin actuators successfully exhibit a pattern that resembles the motion of fore limbs of a swimming sea turtle. In order to further fulfill the potential of the CPG-based control, we propose to feed back the actuator states to the coupled oscillators, thereby achieving not only the synchronization of the oscillators, but also the synchronization of actual foil states. Such a closed-loop version of CPGs makes the controller more robust and practical in the presence of external disturbances.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationRobotics
Subtitle of host publicationScience and Systems IV
EditorsOliver Brock, Jeff Trinkle, Fabio Ramos
PublisherMIT Press Journals
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9780262513098
StatePublished - Jan 1 2009
EventInternational Conference on Robotics Science and Systems, RSS 2008 - Zurich, Switzerland
Duration: Jun 25 2008Jun 28 2008

Publication series

NameRobotics: Science and Systems
ISSN (Print)2330-7668
ISSN (Electronic)2330-765X


OtherInternational Conference on Robotics Science and Systems, RSS 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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