This paper describes the simulation-based design of a teleoperated, omnidirectional ground vehicle. The multi-body dynamic simulation employed is developed in the Simulink environment, specifically employing the Simscape extension of Simulink. The accuracy of the simulation is validated by comparison to data taken from one physical instantiation of the vehicle. The use of simulation allows controlled and rapid “testing” of various configurations of the vehicle without requiring any new construction and without endangering physical hardware. The simulation also provides estimates of quantities, like road force and inertial position, that are difficult to measure. The elements of the vehicle design that are specifically investigated in this paper are the vehicle’s physical geometry and its control system. The design of the vehicle’s control system is challenging because of nonlinearities and uncertainty in the model and because it is desired to control three tightly-coupled outputs (longitudinal, lateral, and angular velocity) via six different inputs (force generated at each of the vehicle’s six wheels).

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