Many telerobotic systems require the use of a slave robot with large inertial and frictional properties. Using a force sensor on the end effector can hide the slave’s inertia and friction from the user providing a more accurate sense of the environment, but introduces dangers of system instability. Both the position and force scale directly affect the system loop gain and hence stability. This opens up the possibility of trading off between them based on the environment and task. In this paper we derive explicit limits for their product. In particular we consider varying environment stiffnesses, as well as distinguishing impact and contact phases. The theoretical limits closely align with experimental results using a large slave telerobotic system interacting with very soft to nearly rigid environments.

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