Marie Charbonneau

Whole-body control methods for robust and safe physical interaction

Principal Supervisors: 
Dr. Francesco Nori 
Dr. Daniele Pucci 
Fondazione Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Dynamic Interaction Control

Collaboration partners:

Competence Area: Embodiment


Marie Charbonneau received a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Sherbrooke (Canada) in 2010, leading her to begin her career as a mechanical design and simulation consultant. In 2011, she was introduced to robotics through mentoring for the FIRST Robotics Challenge. This experience encouraged her to undertake master studies in Robotics Engineering through the Erasmus Mundus EMARO program, carried out as a joint degree between the University of Genoa, Warsaw University of Technology and ETH Zürich.

She has been working as an early stage researcher at the Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia in Genoa since 2015, towards the completion of a PhD in whole-body control of humanoid robots.


For the development of robots that can be used in human environments, this project focuses on methods for the whole-body control of a humanoid robot, given the following objectives:

  • Allow stable, reactive dynamic movements such as walking
  • Ensure compliance of the robot to physical interaction

State of the art whole-body controllers have already been developed for walking, but robustness can still be considered an issue. This project investigates solution for coping with unexpected disturbances and changes in working conditions, as well as for performing a variety of tasks, without human intervention.

The iCub robot is used for experiments and validating the proposed methods.



M. Charbonneau, V. Modugno, F. Nori, G. Oriolo, D. Pucci and S. Ivaldi, Learning robust task priorities of QP-based whole-body torque-controllers, 2018 IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots, Nov 2018

S. Dafarra, G. Nava, M. Charbonneau, N. Guedelha, F. Andrade, S. Traversaro, L. Fiorio, F. Romano, F. Nori, G. Metta, and D. Pucci, A Control Architecture with Online Predictive Planning for Position and Torque Controlled Walking of Humanoid Robots, in 2018 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Oct 2018

M. Charbonneau, G. Nava, F. Nori and D. Pucci, An Optimization Based Control Framework for Balancing and Walking: Implementation on the iCub Robot, arXiv:1707.08359 [cs], July 2017

M. Charbonneau, F. Nori and D. Pucci, On-line joint limit avoidance for torque controlled robots by joint space parametrization, in 2016 IEEE-RAS 16th International Conference on Humanoid Robots (Humanoids), Nov 2016


email: marie.charbonneau [at]

LinkedIn: Marie Charbonneau

ResearchGate: Marie Charbonneau