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A Gazebo model/sensor plugin that simulates the SynTouch BioTac tactile sensor.
C++ Python CMake Shell
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Gazebo plug-in for simulating BioTac tactile sensors


  • This repository contains a Gazebo plug-in for simulating BioTac tactile sensors.
  • The plug-in publishes ROS messages containing simulated electrode and pressure sensor readings as if they were generated by real BioTac sensors.
  • The sensor outputs are simulated using an artificial neural network.
  • Example projects, training scripts, and a pretrained sensor model are included.


  • Clone this reposity
  • If you want to run the demos: get the Shadow hand packages and their dependencies
  • If you want to train the plug-in yourself instead of using a pretrained model, get Keras, Tensorflow, Apriltags, and the Shadow hand packages

Running the demos

  • Launch a simulation environment (eg. roslaunch sim_biotac_motorhand sim_biotac_motorhand_1.launch, or roslaunch sim_biotac_motorhand sim_biotac_motorhand_2.launch, or roslaunch sim_biotac_motorhand ur5_motorhand.launch)
  • Run one of the tests (eg. rosrun sim_biotac_motorhand move_finger_1, or rosrun sim_biotac_motorhand move_finger_2, or rosrun sim_biotac_motorhand tripod_grasp)


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