Postdoctoral position : « From grasping to dexterous manipulation with multifingered robotic hands – a unified control strategy »

Date limite de candidature : 31/08/2021
Date de début : 01/10/2021
Date de fin : 01/10/2022

Pôle : Automatique et systèmes
Type de poste : Post-Doc ou ATER
Contact : MAKAROV Maria (

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Postdoctoral position:

From grasping to dexterous manipulation with multifingered robotic hands – a unified control strategy




This postdoctoral position follows on previous work aimed at robust control design for multifingered hands [Caldas 21]. The present project will focus on the extension and development of 3D task-oriented control strategies from grasping to dexterous manipulation with robotic hands. Multifingered robotic hands are complex mechanical systems with many degrees of freedom (DoFs) allowing in-hand manipulation of a large variety of objects, promising versatile capabilities with contrast to simpler grippers, for industrial or service applications. The challenge lies in precisely controlling these DoFs, especially during complex tasks such as grasping and dexterous manipulation [Ozawa 17] and the transitions between these tasks, in which humans naturally excel. With the complexity reduction objective, synergy-based control is one of possible approaches [Ficuciello 18]. The concept of synergies, inherited from the neurosciences, with a smaller set of synergistic inputs producing the whole movement of the multifingered hand, is particularly adapted to the grasping problem. However, this type of control is not suitable for fine manipulation of the grasped object and task-oriented strategies seem to be preferable [Caldas 15]. In [Ortenzi 18], the authors highlight the role of the (manipulation) task in selecting a grasp. Thus, the transition from grasping to a task-level dexterous manipulation strategy remains an open research subject and the proposal of a complete framework including those two aspects is to be explored.

In this project, we aim to develop a new control strategy that considers the consecutive hand actions from grasping to dexterous manipulation in a unified framework. Previously developed kinematic and dynamic models, as well as grasp quality measures and dexterous manipulation control strategies will allow the researcher to focus on new control laws and/or learning algorithms to ensure the unified approach of the hand control. The candidate should be interested in optimization-based control strategies, robust control and/or learning techniques.

An experimental validation of the proposed methodology is envisaged using three to five Geomagic Touch haptic interfaces in the role of robotic fingers, which will permit to freely select their relative position and test different task scenarios. The manipulation objectives will include translation, reorientation and lifting of the objects.

Duration: 1-year postdoc (6 months at L2S, 6 months at ESME Sudria)

Research topics:



– PhD degree in Robotics, Control theory or related fields

– Experience of publishing high quality research papers

– Speaking and writing English at the scientific and professional level

– Good communication skills and ability to cooperate

Desired but not mandatory:

– Experience in multifingered hand control

– Experience in reinforcement learning

– Experience in ROS


To apply: 

Required Documents:

  1. Detailed curriculum vitae and publication list
  2. Cover Letter
  3. Names and contact details of 2 referees


Deadline for applications: August 30, 2021

[Caldas 14] Caldas, A., Micaelli, A., Grossard, M., Makarov, M., Rodríguez-Ayerbe, P., & Dumur, D. (2014, July). New metric for wrench space reachability of multifingered hand with contact uncertainties. In 2014 IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (pp. 1236-1242). IEEE.

[Caldas 15] Caldas, A., Micaelli, A., Grossard, M., Makarov, M., Rodriguez-Ayerbe, P., & Dumur, D. (2015, September). On task-decoupling by robust eigenstructure assignment for dexterous manipulation. In 2015 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) (pp. 5654-5661).

[Caldas 21] Caldas, A., Grossard, M., Makarov, M., Rodriguez-Ayerbe, P., Task-level dexterous manipulation with multifingered hand under modeling uncertainties. ASME Journal of Dynamic Systems, Measurement and Control. (article under review, available on demand).

[Ficuciello 18] Ficuciello, F. (2018). Synergy-based control of underactuated anthropomorphic hands. IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, 15(2), 1144-1152.

[Ortenzi 18] Ortenzi, V., Controzzi, M., Cini, F., Leitner, J., Bianchi, M., Roa, M. A., & Corke, P. (2019). Robotic manipulation and the role of the task in the metric of success. Nature Machine Intelligence, 1(8), 340-346.

[Ozawa 17] Ozawa, R., & Tahara, K. (2017). Grasp and dexterous manipulation of multi-fingered robotic hands: a review from a control view point. Advanced Robotics, 31(19-20), 1030-1050.