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Fuzzy Force-Feedback Augmentation for Manual Control of Multirobot System

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2 Author(s)
Linda, O. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Univ. of Idaho, Idaho Falls, ID, USA ; Manic, M.

Multirobot systems represent an enticing area of research with numerous real-world applications. Teams of multiple robots can achieve tasks that are more difficult or even impossible for a single robot, e.g., environment exploration, search and rescue, or surveillance operations. In a previous work, the authors developed a system for the single-operator manual control of a multirobot system. However, such teleoperation systems commonly suffer from inadequate perception of the remote environment. This paper extends the previously presented work by adding a fuzzy force-feedback (FFF) augmentation for the manual control of a multirobot system. The FFF augmentation delivers additional information to the operator. Moreover, it guides the operator toward the smooth control of the robotic group. The force feedback was generated by a system of fuzzy controllers monitoring the state of the multirobot group. The performance of the system was evaluated in a virtual environment, and the recorded forces were explored in various scenarios. The force-feedback augmentation demonstrated the following improvements: 1) operator's increased obstacle awareness and 2) improved maneuvering performance.

Published in:

Industrial Electronics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:58 ,  Issue: 8 )