Kinematic motion planning using geometric mechanics tends to prescribe a trajectory in a parameterization of a shape space and determine its displacement in a position space. Often this trajectory is called a gait. Previous works assumed that the shape space is Euclidean when often it is not, either because the robotic joints can spin around forever (i.e., has an 𝕊1 configuration space component, or its parameterization has an 𝕊1 dimension). Consider a shape space that is a torus; gaits that “wrap” around the full range of a shape variable and return to its starting configuration are valid gaits in the shape space yet appear as line segments in the parameterization. Since such a gait does not form a closed loop in the parameterization, existing geometric mechanics methods cannot properly consider them. By explicitly analyzing the topology of the underlying shape space, we derive geometric tools to consider systems with toroidal and cylindrical shape spaces.

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