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Belt tactile interface for communication with mobile robot allowing intelligent obstacle detection

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3 Author(s)

This paper focuses on the construction of a novel belt tactile interface and telepresence system intended for mobile robot control. The robotic system consists of a mobile robot and a wearable master robot. The elaborated algorithms allow the robot to precisely recognize the shape, boundaries, movement direction, speed, and distance to the obstacle by means of the laser range finders. The designed tactile belt interface receives the detected information and maps it through the vibrotactile patterns. We designed the patterns in such a way that they convey the obstacle parameters in a very intuitive, robust, and unobtrusive manner. The robot movement direction and speed are governed by the tilt of the user's torso. The sensors embedded into the belt interface measure the user orientation and gestures precisely. Such an interface lets to deeply engage the user into the teleoperation process and to deliver them the tactile perception of the remote environment at the same time. The key point is that the user gets the opportunity to use own arms, hands, fingers for operation of the robotic manipulators and another devices installed on the mobile robot platform. The experimental results of user study revealed the effectiveness of the designed vibration patterns for obstacle parameter presentation. The accuracy in 100% for detection of the moving object by participants was achieved. We believe that the developed robotic system has significant potential in facilitating the navigation of mobile robot while providing a high degree of immersion into remote space.

Published in:

World Haptics Conference (WHC), 2011 IEEE

Date of Conference:

21-24 June 2011