ZA-2203 Robotic Systems

Module Code: ZA-2203
Module Title: Robotic Systems
Type of Module: Major Core for Bachelor of Digital Science Major in Artificial Intelligence and Robotics
Modular Credits: 4MC


  • ZZ-1101 Mathematical Methods for the Sciences or equivalent knowledge of mathematics
  • ZZ-1102 Programming Fundamentals or equivalent programming knowledge




This module introduces to the students the basics of modelling and control of robot systems and train them to develop planning and control software modules for robots like manipulators. (Module Outlines)


  • Dr Ong Wee Hong,, Office: APB 2.43
  • Dr Ajaz Ahmad Bhat,, Office: APB 2.48

Class times:

Two 2hrs sessions per week for 14 weeks.


  • Examination 30%
  • Coursework 70% – one class test (10%), two assignments (10% each), one lab test (15%), one project (25%)


  • (Textbook) Kevin M. Lynch and Frank C. Park, “Modern Robotics: Mechanics, Planning, and Control“, Cambridge University Press, 2017, ISBN 9781107156302 (Video lectures)
  • Mark W. Spong, Seth Hutchinson, M. Vidyasagar, “Robot Modeling and Control, 2nd Edition”, Wiley, ISBN: 978-1-119-52404-5
  • Peter Corke, “Robotics, Vision and Control Fundamental Algorithms in Matlab, 2nd Edition”, Springer, ISBN: 978-3-319-54412-0
  • Richar M. Murray, Zexiang Li, S. Shankar Sastry, “A Mathematical Introduction to Robotic Manipulation”, Taylor & Francis, ISBN: 978-0-8493-7981-9
  • John J. Craig, “Introduction to Robotics: Mechanics and Control, Third Edition”, Pearson, ISBN: 978-1-292-04004-2
  • CS223A – Introduction to Robotics by Professor Oussama Khatib at Stanford University
  • QUT Robot Academy video lectures by Professor Peter Corke at Queensland University of Technology

Acknowledgement: I have made extensive reference and utilized materials from the above resources, as well as other online content, to prepare my course materials. In particular, most of the materials are copied from the Modern Robotics.

Course schedule:

Weeks 1-7 are taught by Dr Ong Wee Hong, weeks 9-15 are taught by Dr Ajaz Ahmad Bhat.

Week Session 1 (2 hrs) Session 2 (2 hrs) Notes
1 L1 Introduction, L2 Configuration Space L2 Configuration Space
2 L3 Rigid Body Motions L3 Rigid Body Motions
3 Tutorial 1: C-Spaces, Tutorial 2: Rigid Body Motions L4 Forward Kinematics
4 L4 Forward Kinematics Tutorial 3: Forward Kinematics
5 L5 Velocity Kinematics L6 Inverse Kinematics Assignment 1 Out
6 L6 Inverse Kinematics, Tutorial 4: Velocity Kinematics Tutorial 5: Inverse Kinematics
7 Class Test (L1-L6) Assignment 1 Due
8 Mid Semester Break
9 Lab 1: Robotic Systems Simulation and Middleware Lab 2: Webots and Transformation
10 Lab 3: RTB: Forward Kinematics Lab 4: RTB: Inverse Kinematics Project Out
11 L7 Dynamics of Rigid Bodies, Task-Space Dynamics L7 Dynamics of Rigid Bodies, Task-Space Dynamics
12 Tutorial 5: Dynamics Lab 5: Dynamics Assignment 2 Out
13 Lab Test (Lab 1 – Lab 5) L8 Trajectory Generation
14 L9 Control Theory, Feedback and Force Control Tutorial 6: Control Theory Assignment 2 Due
15 L10 Alternative Approaches to Optimal Control Lab 6: Control Theory and Trajectory Planning Project Due
16 Revision Week
17-18 Examination Week

Course materials:


  1. L1 Introduction, Robotic Fields & Applications
    • Introduction
    • What is a Robot?
    • Properties of Robots
    • Components of Robots
    • Challenges in Robotics
    • Applications of Robots
    • Types of Robots
    • Robotics in SDS
  2. L2 Configuration Space
    • Actions, actuator, effector, end-effector
    • Describing motion
    • Configuration of a robotic system
    • Configuration space (CS)
      • CS Dimension: Degree of freedom (DoF)
      • CS Topology
      • CS Representation: explicit, implicit
    • Holonomic, nonholonomic constraints
    • Workspace: dexterous, reachable
    • Task space
  3. L3 Rigid Body Motions
    • Coordinate systems
    • Describing position
    • Describing orientation
    • Describing motion: translation and rotation
    • More on orientation and rotation
    • Describing pose (configuration)
    • Describing displacement (transformation)
    • Describing velocities (screw theory)
  4. L4 Forward Kinematics
    • Kinematics vs dynamics
    • Forward kinematics vs inverse kinematics
    • Forward kinematics computation
    • Power of Exponential (PoE) to compute forward kinematics in base form
    • PoE in body form
  5. L5 Velocity Kinematics
    • Velocity kinematics
    • Jacobian
    • Singularities
    • Manipulability ellipsoid
    • Spatial Jacobian
  6. L6 Inverse Kinematics
    • Approaches in inverse kinematics
    • Analytical IK for 2R planar robot: geometry
    • Analytical IK for 2R planar robot: algebra
    • Analytical IK for 6R Puma robot
    • Numerical IK: Newton-Raphson method for numerical IK
  7. L7 Dynamics of Rigid Bodies, Task-Space Dynamics
  8. L8 Trajectory Generation
  9. L9 Control Theory, Feedback and Force Control
  10. L10 Alternative Approaches to Optimal Control


  1. Tutorial 1: Configuration Spaces (solution)
  2. Tutorial 2: Rigid Body Motions (solution)
  3. Tutorial 3: Forward Kinematics (solution)
  4. Tutorial 4: Velocity Kinematics (solution)
  5. Tutorial 5: Inverse Kinematics (solution)
  6. Tutorial 6: Dynamics
  7. Tutorial 7: Control Theory


  1. Lab 1: Robotic Systems Simulation and Middleware
  2. Lab 2: Webots and Transformations
  3. Lab 3: Robotic Tool Box (RTB): Forward Kinematics
  4. Lab 4: RTB: Inverse Kinematics
  5. Lab 5: Dynamics
  6. Lab 6: Control Theory and Trajectory Planning


  • Assignment 1 (L1-L6)
  • Assignment 2 (L7-L10)
  • Class Test (L1-L6)
  • Lab Test (Lab 1 – Lab 5)
  • Project
  • Examination (L1-L10)