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Augmented virtuality based immersive telepresence for control of mining robots

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2 Author(s)
Varadarajan, K.M. ; Autom. & Control Inst. (ACIN), Tech. Univ. of Vienna (TU Wien), Vienna, Austria ; Vincze, M.

Vast mineral resources of precious metals such as gold remain trapped and unexploited due to the lack of economical and practical means of exploration. This requires the development of alternate exploitation techniques. Mining robots form a significant alternative to convention mining techniques. However, there are several practical limitations that make such systems difficult to implement in practice. The primary hurdle in realizing such systems is the difficulty in tele-operating the robot under high latency conditions, which is typical of mining of environments. This is further compounded by poor representation of the environment, resulting in reduced situational awareness. The latency in tele-operation can be caused by numerous factors - system latency, compression scheme, communication protocols, constraints on bandwidth, channel contention, poor line of sight and display overhead. This is typically countered by reduction of frame rate or display resolution or quality. This further affects remote navigation of the robot. Non-holistic scene displays further degrade situational perception. This is intricately tied to the effectiveness of the Operator Control Unit (OCU). Besides, improvements in these capabilities without any vehicle intelligence do little in reducing the operator task-load. In this paper, we present the design of a novel augmented virtuality based visualization and operator interface unit along supported by vehicular intelligence, which are targeted at overcoming the above issues. These design considerations and presented algorithms are expected to form the foundation of next generation mining robots.

Published in:

Computational Intelligence and Intelligent Informatics (ISCIII), 2011 5th International Symposium on

Date of Conference:

15-17 Sept. 2011