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The welding tracking technology of an underwater welding robot based on sliding mode active disturbance rejection control

Shengqian Li (Department of Electrical Engineering, Guangdong Mechanical and Electrical Polytechnic, Guangzhou, China)
Xiaofan Zhang (Department of Automobile and Transportation Engineering, Guangdong Polytechnic Normal University, Guangzhou, China)

Assembly Automation

ISSN: 0144-5154

Article publication date: 30 November 2022

Issue publication date: 6 December 2022




A welding robot is a complicated system with uncertainty, time-varying, strong coupling and non-linear system. It is more complicated if it is used in an underwater environment. It is difficult to establish an accurate dynamic model for an underwater welding robot. Aiming at the tracking control of an underwater welding robot, it is difficult to achieve the control performance requirements by the classical proportional integral derivative control method to realize automatic tracking of the seam. The purpose of this paper is to suggest a novel method to deal with these issues.


To combine the advantages of active disturbance rejection control (ADRC) and sliding mode control (SMC) to improve the shortcomings of a single control method, a hybrid control method for an underwater welding robot trajectory tracking based on SMC_ADRC is proposed in this research work.


The simulation experiment of the proposed approach is carried out by Matlab/Simulink, and the welding experiment is recorded. The seam gets plumper and smoother, with better continuity and no undercut phenomenon.


The proposed approach is effective and reliable, and the system’s tracking performance is stable, which can effectively reduce chattering and improve system robustness.



This work was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant no. 2011AA040201), the University-level Funding Projects of Guangdong Mechanical and Electrical Polytechnic (Grant no. Gccrcxm-202007). The 2021 Guangdong Provincial Department of education recognized scientific research projects in Colleges and Universities (Grant no. 2021KTSCX205) and The 2021 School-level Scientific Research Projects (Grant no. YJZD2021-54).

Conflict of interest: The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


Li, S. and Zhang, X. (2022), "The welding tracking technology of an underwater welding robot based on sliding mode active disturbance rejection control", Assembly Automation, Vol. 42 No. 6, pp. 891-900.



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