A framework to manage and switch between several sensor modalities in tele-operation

Andrea Cherubini, Robin Passama, Philippe Fraisse, André Crosnier, A unified multimodal control framework for human–robot interaction, Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Volume 70, August 2015, Pages 106-115, ISSN 0921-8890, DOI: 10.1016/j.robot.2015.03.002.

In human–robot interaction, the robot controller must reactively adapt to sudden changes in the environment (due to unpredictable human behaviour). This often requires operating different modes, and managing sudden signal changes from heterogeneous sensor data. In this paper, we present a multimodal sensor-based controller, enabling a robot to adapt to changes in the sensor signals (here, changes in the human collaborator behaviour). Our controller is based on a unified task formalism, and in contrast with classical hybrid visicn–force–position control, it enables smooth transitions and weighted combinations of the sensor tasks. The approach is validated in a mock-up industrial scenario, where pose, vision (from both traditional camera and Kinect), and force tasks must be realized either exclusively or simultaneously, for human–robot collaboration.

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