Collaborating Authors

Deep Dynamics Models for Dexterous Manipulation


Figure 1: Our approach (PDDM) can efficiently and effectively learn complex dexterous manipulation skills in both simulation and the real world. Here, the learned model is able to control the 24-DoF Shadow Hand to rotate two free-floating Baoding balls in the palm, using just 4 hours of real-world data with no prior knowledge/assumptions of system or environment dynamics. Dexterous manipulation with multi-fingered hands is a grand challenge in robotics: the versatility of the human hand is as yet unrivaled by the capabilities of robotic systems, and bridging this gap will enable more general and capable robots. Although some real-world tasks (like picking up a television remote or a screwdriver) can be accomplished with simple parallel jaw grippers, there are countless tasks (like functionally using the remote to change the channel or using the screwdriver to screw in a nail) in which dexterity enabled by redundant degrees of freedom is critical. In fact, dexterous manipulation is defined as being object-centric, with the goal of controlling object movement through precise control of forces and motions -- something that is not possible without the ability to simultaneously impact the object from multiple directions.

Dexterous Manipulation with Deep Reinforcement Learning: Efficient, General, and Low-Cost Artificial Intelligence

Dexterous multi-fingered robotic hands can perform a wide range of manipulation skills, making them an appealing component for general-purpose robotic manipulators. However, such hands pose a major challenge for autonomous control, due to the high dimensionality of their configuration space and complex intermittent contact interactions. In this work, we propose deep reinforcement learning (deep RL) as a scalable solution for learning complex, contact rich behaviors with multi-fingered hands. Deep RL provides an end-to-end approach to directly map sensor readings to actions, without the need for task specific models or policy classes. We show that contact-rich manipulation behavior with multi-fingered hands can be learned by directly training with model-free deep RL algorithms in the real world, with minimal additional assumption and without the aid of simulation. We learn a variety of complex behaviors on two different low-cost hardware platforms. We show that each task can be learned entirely from scratch, and further study how the learning process can be further accelerated by using a small number of human demonstrations to bootstrap learning. Our experiments demonstrate that complex multi-fingered manipulation skills can be learned in the real world in about 4-7 hours for most tasks, and that demonstrations can decrease this to 2-3 hours, indicating that direct deep RL training in the real world is a viable and practical alternative to simulation and model-based control. \url{}

Learning Complex Dexterous Manipulation with Deep Reinforcement Learning and Demonstrations Artificial Intelligence

Dexterous multi-fingered hands are extremely versatile and provide a generic way to perform a multitude of tasks in human-centric environments. However, effectively controlling them remains challenging due to their high dimensionality and large number of potential contacts. Deep reinforcement learning (DRL) provides a model-agnostic approach to control complex dynamical systems, but has not been shown to scale to high-dimensional dexterous manipulation. Furthermore, deployment of DRL on physical systems remains challenging due to sample inefficiency. Consequently, the success of DRL in robotics has thus far been limited to simpler manipulators and tasks. In this work, we show that model-free DRL can effectively scale up to complex manipulation tasks with a high-dimensional 24-DoF hand, and solve them from scratch in simulated experiments. Furthermore, with the use of a small number of human demonstrations, the sample complexity can be significantly reduced, which enables learning with sample sizes equivalent to a few hours of robot experience. The use of demonstrations result in policies that exhibit very natural movements and, surprisingly, are also substantially more robust.

Learning Hierarchical Control for Robust In-Hand Manipulation Artificial Intelligence

Tingguang Li 1, 2, Krishnan Srinivasan 2, Max Qing-Hu Meng 1, Wenzhen Y uan 3 and Jeannette Bohg 2 Abstract -- Robotic in-hand manipulation has been a longstanding challenge due to the complexity of modelling hand and object in contact and of coordinating finger motion for complex manipulation sequences. T o address these challenges, the majority of prior work has either focused on model-based, low-level controllers or on model-free deep reinforcement learning that each have their own limitations. We propose a hierarchical method that relies on traditional, model-based controllers on the low-level and learned policies on the mid-level. The low-level controllers can robustly execute different manipulation primitives (reposing, sliding, flipping). We extensively evaluate our approach in simulation with a 3-fingered hand that controls three degrees of freedom of elongated objects. We show that our approach can move objects between almost all the possible poses in the workspace while keeping them firmly grasped. We also show that our approach is robust to inaccuracies in the object models and to observation noise. Finally, we show how our approach generalizes to objects of other shapes. I NTRODUCTION Dexterous Manipulation refers to the ability of changing the pose of an object to any other pose within the workspace of a hand [1-3]. In this paper, we are particularly concerned with the ability of in-hand manipulation where the object is continuously moved within the hand without dropping. This ability is used frequently in human manipulation e.g. when grasping a tool and readjusting it within the hand, when inspecting an object, when assembling objects or when adjusting an unstable grasp. Y et, in-hand manipulation remains a longstanding challenge in robotics despite the availability of multi-fingered dexterous hands such as [4-6].

Learning Dexterous In-Hand Manipulation Artificial Intelligence

We use reinforcement learning (RL) to learn dexterous in-hand manipulation policies which can perform vision-based object reorientation on a physical Shadow Dexterous Hand. The training is performed in a simulated environment in which we randomize many of the physical properties of the system like friction coefficients and an object's appearance. Our policies transfer to the physical robot despite being trained entirely in simulation. Our method does not rely on any human demonstrations, but many behaviors found in human manipulation emerge naturally, including finger gaiting, multi-finger coordination, and the controlled use of gravity. Our results were obtained using the same distributed RL system that was used to train OpenAI Five. We also include a video of our results: