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First steps towards reliable augmented reality based human-robot interaction have been explored by the industrial robot manufacturer KUKA within the German cooperative research project MORPHA. Various aspects of augmented reality were analyzed and evaluated with respect to industrial requirements: interaction devices, tracking methods, accuracy, cost etc. As a result of this study, training of, and qualification for, robot operation and programming was selected as the most promising area for AR-based human-robot interaction with state-of-the-art AR techniques and devices. Therefore, research work concentrated on visualizing workflows that help inexperienced users to cope with rather complex robot operation and programming tasks. Several AR-based human-robot interaction prototypes were developed and presented to KUKA College students. Implementation details and results of initial experiments and a user survey are presented.
Date of Conference: 28 Sept.-2 Oct. 2004