Aerial physical interaction via IDA-PBC

Burak Yüksel, Cristian Secchi, Heinrich H. Bülthoff, Antonio Franchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


This paper proposes the use of a novel control method based on interconnection and damping assignment–passivity-based control (IDA-PBC) in order to address the aerial physical interaction (APhI) problem for a quadrotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). The apparent physical properties of the quadrotor are reshaped in order to achieve better APhI performances, while ensuring the stability of the interaction through passivity preservation. The robustness of the IDA-PBC method with respect to sensor noise is also analyzed. The direct measurement of the external wrench, needed to implement the control method, is compared with the use of a nonlinear Lyapunov-based wrench observer and advantages/disadvantages of both methods are discussed. The validity and practicability of the proposed APhI method is evaluated through experiments, where for the first time in the literature, a lightweight all-in-one low-cost force/torque (F/T) sensor is used onboard of a quadrotor. Two main scenarios are shown: a quadrotor responding to external disturbances while hovering (physical human–quadrotor interaction), and the same quadrotor sliding with a rigid tool along an uneven ceiling surface (inspection/painting-like task).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-421
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Robotics Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Apr 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2019.


  • F/T sensors
  • aerial physical interaction
  • aerial robotics
  • passivity-based control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Applied Mathematics


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