-Multijoint Humanoid Arm-Hand Robot-


 In recent years, non-industrial robots aiming at support of surgical operation and nursing care attract a lot of attention in the medical and welfare fields. In such fields, the use of humanoid robots is suitable because they can immerse better to the human environment and show affinity to human. Furthermore, the boundary of human workspace is continuously expanding. 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.
 Our research group conducts researches on the humanoid multi-link arm-hand robot, which consists of multi-finger hand robot and multi-link arm robot where the hand robot is attached to. The arm-hand robot is to perform complex tasks within human environment. The arm robot has 7 joints, while the hand robot has 4 fingers and 13 joints. Each finger is equipped with 6-axis force sensor.

System for reproducing expert massage

 We have developed a system for reproducing expert massage using a hand robot. We recorded real massage data performed by expert physiotherapist. In our research, we study how a robot hand can effectively reproduce the expert massage action. One of the remaining future challenges is measuring bio-information, such as muscle stiffness, and realizing optimal massage by using the information.

Control of grasping and manipulation using multiple cameras

 We would like to reproduce in a robot system the sequence of events of recognizing and holding an object as how human does by their eyes and hands. For this, we use multiple cameras to recognize the object's shape and position, and then perform grasping and manipulation control by hand robot. In addition, we also conduct research on control method to prevent excessive force in transition from non-contact to contact state, even in presence of camera recognition error.

Bilateral telemanipulation between a human and a humanoid arm-hand robot

 Human fingers' angle is measured by a data capture glove (CyberGlove) and then sent to the robot side. Based on the information, a hand robot moves following the human fingers movement. Each fingertip of the hand robot is equipped with a 6 axis force sensor. When the hand robot grasps an object, reaction forces are measured and then sent back to the human operator side. Using a wire type haptic device (CyberGrasp), the forces can be reproduced on the operator's fingertips such that the operator feels as if he really grasps the real object. In addition, the position of the operator's hand is measured by a 3 dimension position measurement device (FASTRAK) and sent as well to the robot side, so that the arm robot can also follow the position of the human's hand.
 Because the data transmission method uses general Internet connection, the teleoperation system can be used from anywhere in the world to grasp, manipulate, and move objects located in a very distant place.

 The movie on the right shows a real teleoperation experiment by human operator in California, USA to operate an arm hand robot at TUT, Japan. Although there was a round trip delay of about five millisecond between Japan and USA, the teleoperation of the arm hand robot was carried out without problem.

Research Theme



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