This is the documentation of RBDL, the Rigid Body Dynamics Library. The library contains highly efficient code for both forward and inverse dynamics. It includes:
- Recursive Newton Euler Algorithm
- Composite Rigid Body Algorithm
- Articulated Body Algorithm.
Furthermore it contains functions for forward and inverse kinematics and contact handling.
The code is written by Martin Felis firstname.lastname@example.org and heavily inspired by the pseudo code of the book "Rigid Body Dynamics Algorithms" of Roy Featherstone.
For optimal performance it is advised to use version 3 of the Eigen Eigen math library. More information about it can be found here: http://eigen.tuxfamily.org/. The library must be obtained and installed separately.
You can download the most recent stable version as zip file from here:
All development takes place on Bitbucket and you can follow RBDL's development here:
Recent Changes :
29 August 2014: New version 2.3.2:
critical: fixed ForwardDynamicsLagrangian which used uninitialized values for the joint space inertia matrix (thanks to Benjamin Michaud)
critical: fixed ForwardDynamicsContacts when using 3-dof joints
critical: fixed CalcBodyWorldOrientation for fixed joints (thanks to Hilaro Tome!)
critical: fixed CompositeRigidBodyDynamics when using 3-dof joints (thanks to Henning Koch!)
13 July 2014: New version: 2.3.1:
critical: fixed angular momentum computation. Version 2.3.0 produced wrong results. (Thanks to Hilario Tome and Benjamin Michaud for reporting!)
critical: fixed JointTypeEulerZYX. Previous versions produce wrong results!
fixed library version number for the LuaModel addon.
17 March 2014: New version: 2.3.0:
06 November 2013: New version 2.2.2: adjusted Body default constructor (inertia matrix now 3x3 identity instead of zero matrix)
4 November 2013: New version 2.2.1: fixed exported library version
28 October 2013: New version 2.2.0: added support for spherical joints that do not suffer from Singularities
29 September 2013: New version 2.1.0: adjusted build settings and symbol export to be debian compatible. Removed vendor code such as Lua 5.2 and UnitTest++. Must be pre-installed if tests or LuaModel Addon is enabled.
05 September 2013: New version 2.0.1: fixed some errors on older compilers and CMake configuration of examples. No changes required when migrating from 2.0.0.
18. July 2013: new API version 2.0.0 for details see (API Changes)
20. February 2013: removed too specialized RigidBodyDynamics::Body constructor (API version 1.1.0)
29. January 2013: added code for API Changes. Current is 1.0.0.
18. June 2012: added support of Lua Models
01. June 2012: added support of Fixed Joints
14. May 2012: fixed Body constructor as reported by Maxime Reis
04. April 2012: added benchmark tool for CRBA
01. March 2012: added multi degree of freedom Joint Description
06. Februry 2012: restructured constraint handling using RigidBodyDynamics::ConstraintSet
24. January 2012: implemented compact and fast representation of RigidBodyDynamics::Math::SpatialTransform
A simple example for creation of a model and computation of the forward dynamics using the C++ API can be found here.
Another example that uses the LuaModel Addon can be found here.
API reference separated by functional modules
The page API Changes contains information about incompatibilities of the existing versions and how to migrate.
The library is published under the very permissive zlib free software license which should allow you to use the software wherever you need. Here is the full license text:
RBDL - Rigid Body Dynamics Library
Copyright (c) 2011-2012 Martin Felis <email@example.com>
This software is provided 'as-is', without any express or implied
warranty. In no event will the authors be held liable for any damages
arising from the use of this software.
Permission is granted to anyone to use this software for any purpose,
including commercial applications, and to alter it and redistribute it
freely, subject to the following restrictions:
1. The origin of this software must not be misrepresented; you must not
claim that you wrote the original software. If you use this software
in a product, an acknowledgment in the product documentation would be
appreciated but is not required.
2. Altered source versions must be plainly marked as such, and must not be
misrepresented as being the original software.
3. This notice may not be removed or altered from any source