Safety of human-robot physical interaction is enabled not only by suitable robot control strategies but also by suitable sensing technologies. For example, if distributed tactile sensors were available on the robot, they could be used not only to detect unintentional collisions, but also as human-machine interface by enabling a new mode of social interaction with the machine. Starting from their previous works, the authors developed a conformable distributed tactile sensor that can be easily conformed to the different parts of the robot body. Its ability to estimate contact force components and to provide a tactile map with an accurate spatial resolution enables the robot to handle both unintentional collisions in safe human-robot collaboration tasks and intentional touches where the sensor is used as human-machine interface. In this paper, the authors present the characterization of the proposed tactile sensor and they show how it can be also exploited to recognize haptic tactile gestures, by tailoring recognition algorithms, well known in the image processing field, to the case of tactile images. In particular, a set of haptic gestures has been defined to test three recognition algorithms on a group of 20 users. The paper demonstrates how the same sensor originally designed to manage unintentional collisions can be successfully used also as human-machine interface.

A Distributed Tactile Sensor for Intuitive Human-Robot Interfacing

De Maria, Giuseppe;Natale, Ciro;Pirozzi, Salvatore
2017

Abstract

Safety of human-robot physical interaction is enabled not only by suitable robot control strategies but also by suitable sensing technologies. For example, if distributed tactile sensors were available on the robot, they could be used not only to detect unintentional collisions, but also as human-machine interface by enabling a new mode of social interaction with the machine. Starting from their previous works, the authors developed a conformable distributed tactile sensor that can be easily conformed to the different parts of the robot body. Its ability to estimate contact force components and to provide a tactile map with an accurate spatial resolution enables the robot to handle both unintentional collisions in safe human-robot collaboration tasks and intentional touches where the sensor is used as human-machine interface. In this paper, the authors present the characterization of the proposed tactile sensor and they show how it can be also exploited to recognize haptic tactile gestures, by tailoring recognition algorithms, well known in the image processing field, to the case of tactile images. In particular, a set of haptic gestures has been defined to test three recognition algorithms on a group of 20 users. The paper demonstrates how the same sensor originally designed to manage unintentional collisions can be successfully used also as human-machine interface.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11591/385461
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