Assisted Gravity Compensation to Cope with the Complexity of Kinesthetic Teaching on Redundant Robots

TitleAssisted Gravity Compensation to Cope with the Complexity of Kinesthetic Teaching on Redundant Robots
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsEmmerich C, Nordmann A, Swadzba A, Steil JJ, Wrede S
Abstract

Facilitating efficient reconfiguration of advanced robot systems to new tasks or environments is an ongoing research challenge. While imitation learning methods as well as modeling and simulation tools are continuously improving to reduce the inherent complexity of reconfiguration, novel robot systems are entering the field which pose new challenges. This paper addresses one important challenge in this area, which is the programming of kinematically redundant robots. We show as a result of a field study with 48 industrial workers that standard programming-by-demonstration methods for teaching task-space trajectories on a redundant robot using physical human-robot interaction are too complex for non-expert human tutors. We therefore propose a new interaction concept for redundant robot systems, Assisted Gravity Compensation, based on a hierarchical control scheme, separating task-space programming from the redundancy resolution. The user is actively assisted by a given redundancy resolution while kinesthetically teaching task-space trajectories. The results of the field study show that by this means the complexity of a kinesthetic teaching task is reduced, which is revealed by an improved task performance and user experience, making kinesthetic teaching an efficient programming-by-demonstration method for redundant robots.