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I found that PAL support many physical engines.

I specially interested in not only rigid models but also fluid or breakable models.

Here is the list of PAL features now:

     Physics Engines
         Box2D (experimental)
         Havok (experimental)
         IBDS (experimental)
         OpenTissue (experimental)
         PhysX (a.k.a Novodex, Ageia PhysX, nVidia PhysX)
         Simple Physics Engine (experimental)
     File Formats
         PAL XML(deprecated) 
     Collision subsystem
     Solver subsystem (Multithreaded / Hardware acceleration)
     Bodies (Static and Dynamic)
         Compound Bodies
         Convex Mesh
         Concave Mesh (Terrain)
         Height field (Terrain)
         Plane (Terrain)
         Spherical (Ball and Socket) Link
         Revolute (Hinge) Link
         Prismatic (Slider) Link
         Generic 6DOF Link 
         Compass (Angular position)
         GPS (Global Positioning System - Position)
         Gyroscope (Angular velocity)
         Inclinometer (Angular position)
         PSD (Position Sensitive Device - Ray casting)
         Sonar (Ray casting)
         Velocimeter (Linear velocity)
         Transponder (Distance between two objects) 
         Force actuator (Generic)
         DC Motor
         Servo Motor
         Particle Fluids (SPH)
         Grid-Based Fluids (Dampened Shallow Wave)
         Buoyancy Force
         Drag & Lift Forces 

I also find three engines:

  1. irrlicht engine also seems to be an excellent realtime 3D engine(pretty beautiful).

    image description

  2. SOFA Framework (Deformable models,Rigid models,Fluid models,Collision models)

    image description

  3. SICONOS(simulation of mechanical systems)

    This has special functions I'm not really understand it is useful or not.

      Hybrid systems and switched systems
      Mechanical systems with contact, impact and friction
      Electrical circuits with ideal and piecewise linear components
      Differential inclusions and Complementarity systems
      Sliding mode control and Optimal Control with state constraints
      Linear Complementarity problems (LCP)
      Mixed Linear Complementarity problems (MLCP)
      Nonlinear Complementarity Problems (NCP)
      Friction-contact problems (2D or 3D)
      Primal or Dual Relay problems
      Quadratic Programming problems (QP)

    image description

What ROS already support now?

What engines will be able to support in the future?

Thank you~

Originally posted by sam on ROS Answers with karma: 2570 on 2012-02-08

Post score: 0

Original comments

Comment by sam on 2012-02-08:
Another thing is,if ROS support more engine which can display pretty beautiful scenes,it will also attract more people's attention, and also can build many wonderful scenes for robotics developments. Testing robot algorithms on beautiful scenes will be more comfortable than simple one.

Comment by sam on 2012-02-08:
Let me use Gazebo to express my idea. I use Gazebo for simulated rigid body,but when I want to simulate fluid or some object breakable,I think it will be very hard to make it. I found one cognitive paper use rigid body to simulate breakable egg. Those encourage me to figure out more.

Comment by ahendrix on 2012-02-08:
You may get a better response if you explain how PAL relates to or would be useful for robotics.

Comment by tfoote on 2012-02-08:
What do you mean by ROS support for PAL?


1 Answer 1


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If you're concerned with how Gazebo looks, you can take a look at MORSE. MORSE uses the Blender engine for robot simulation. It is compatible with ROS. This might be along the lines of what you're looking for.

Originally posted by DimitriProsser with karma: 11163 on 2012-02-09

This answer was ACCEPTED on the original site

Post score: 2

Original comments

Comment by DimitriProsser on 2012-02-10:
Blender supports many different formats, such as .stl, .dae (COLLADA), etc. You can export your model to one of those formats

Comment by sam on 2012-02-10:
If it doesn't support URDF, how to import CAD model into there? Thank you~

Comment by DimitriProsser on 2012-02-10:
It does not support URDF as far as I'm aware (I could be wrong though). It's base don the Bullet physics library, which I've read can support fluid simulation and the like, so you should be ok there.

Comment by sam on 2012-02-09:
By the way,does it support URDF? Thank you~

Comment by sam on 2012-02-09:
Thank you~ Is it support for other model like soft,fluid model? I need those models so I choose to write this origin post.


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