Course Unit Profile

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Basic Information

Course Unit Title: ROBOTICS

Course Unit Code: 277II

Level of course unit

Second Cycle Degree Programme in Robotics and Automation Engineering

Year of study

Second year

Semester when the course is delivered


Number of ECTS credits allocated: 12

Name of Lecturer(s):

Prof.: Antonio Bicchi

Prof.: Lucia Pallottino

Language of instruction


General Information

Learning outcomes

The course is divided in two parts: Robot Control and Distributed Robotic Systems.
In the first part, the student will be able to demonstrate knowledge of control of robotic manipulator and autonomous low-speed vehicles. In the second part the student will acquire the basic knowledge and instruments to analyze and project control and management algorithms for distributed automation and robotic systems, both in industry and in service sectors.

Course contents

1) Control of Fully Actuated Mechanical Systems (that is, systems having the number of actuators equal to the Lagrangian coordinates): application and simulation of control schemes: computed torque, arimoto, robust control, adaptive control.
2) Analysis of the structural properties of non linear systems and their applications: qualitatve analysis of the properties of accessibility and attainability, observability, identifiability of robotic systems
3) Non linear Control: application and simulation of Lyapunov control functions, feedback linearization input-state and input-output, control of anolomic systems, backstepping control of dynamics on cynematic model reference.
4) Control of Distributed Autonomous Systems: consensus and formations
5) Distributed Optimization
6) Fundamentals on Motion Planning

Specific Information

Prerequisites, co-requisites, as a prerequisite for further study





Prerequisite for


Further Information

The course is divided in two parts: Robot Control: Prof. Antonio Bicchi Distributed Robotic Systems: Dott.ssa Lucia Pallottino

Mode of delivery


face to face



Teaching methods

Learning activities

Recommended or required reading

first part:
- Bruno Siciliano, Lorenzo Sciavicco, Luigi Villani, Giuseppe Oriolo "Robotics, modelling, planning and control", Springer

second part:
- Stephen M. LaValle, "Motion Planning Algorithms", Cambridge University Press, 2006.
- Mehran Mesbahi & Magnus Egerstedt, "Graph Theoretic Methods in Multiagent Networks", Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ, Sept. 2010.
- Nancy Lynch, "Distributed Algorithms" Elsevier, Morgan Kaufmann, 1996.
- Stephen Boyd and Lieven Vandenberghe, "Convex Optimization", Cambridge University Press

Assessment methods and criteria

Assessment methods

Further information

1)Robot control: the student will present a project on an advanced topic in Robotcs. The project must tackle a problem that must be clearly formulated in presenting a theory or application, and must be solved through an exhaustive analysis of available technologies and methods. The project must demonstrate original content, therefore the presentation of results from existing published work will not be permitted. The student has two months to complete the project upon official presentation and approval by the instructor and teaching assistants. The course is considered completed upon the presentation of a final report that consists of material produced and developed along the duration of the course including exercises on the cours topics, and a report relating to the project. The student's own work will be discussed in presentation form with the instructor and fellow students. 2)Distributed Robotic Systems: the student must complete a small autonomous project and give an oral exam

Assessment criteria

During the exam, the student must demonstrate full comprehension on the main topics of the course

Work placement


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