-Device to Present Weight-

Overview

Recently, there are more and more demands for human to work in extreme environments, such as outer space or disaster site. The use of skillful humanoid robot to replace human operator in such environments is desired. In that scenario, human operates the robot from a safe place afar by teleoperation control.
When a human operator operates a humanoid robot, it is very important that the human can feel the real sense of the situation. For example, if the operating method is too complex or the operator cannot have the sense of reality, the robot operation would become very difficult and not effective. Therefore, it is desirable that the robot operation system can present the sense of reality (e.g. sense of force or touch).
 

Device to present weight

 Our research group focuses on, among various sense information, the weight of the object being lifted. We have constructed a device that can present a sense of weight to the human operator. The device is constructed using three parallel wires, and uses three servo motors to generate tension on the wires. By adjusting the individual tensions, the device can inflict any arbitrary downward force, which is the total of the three wire tensions.

Bilateral telemanipulation between human and arm robot

 The position of a human's hand is measured by using a 3 dimension position measurement instrument (FASTRAK), and then sent to the robot side. Based on the information, a robot arm moves following the movement of the human's hand. When a robot hand, which is attached to the robot arm, grasps and lifts an object, the weight of the object is measured by a load cell and sent to the human side. At the human side, the weight presentation device reproduces the object's weight so that the human can feel the sense of weight, just like lifting the real object.

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