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Key technologies in robot assistants: motion coordination between a human and a mobile robot

: Prassler, E.; Bank, D.; Kluge, B.; Hägele, M.

Korea Institute of Science and Technology -KIST-, Korea; International Federation of Robotics; Korea Machine Tool Manufacturers Association, Korea; Intelligent Microsystem Center, Korea:
32nd International Symposium om Robotics in conjuction with IMS. Proceedings : ISR 2001. Vol.1
Seoul, Korea, 2001
ISBN: 89-88366-04-2
International Symposium on Robotics (ISR) <32, 2001, Seoul, Korea>
Intelligent Microsystem Symposium <1, 2001, Seoul, Korea>
Fraunhofer IPA ()
motion; robotic assistant; Rollstuhl; wheelchair; Roboter; Bewegungsablauf; Kinematik; Mensch

In this paper we describe an approach to coordinating the motion of a human with a mobile robot moving in a populated, continuously changing, natural environment. Our test application is a wheelchair accompanying a person through the concourse of a railway station moving side by side with the person. In healthcare and rehabilitation scenarios this addresses a rather important issue. Pushing and maneuvering a carriage such as a wheelchair or a hospital bed, exposes the back of the pushing person to extreme significant often resulting in severe long-term back problems. Our approach is based on a method for motion planning amongst moving obstacles known as Velocity Obstacle approach. We extend this method by a method for tracking a virtual target which allows us to vary the robot's heading and velocity with the locomotion of the accompanied person and the state of the surrounding environment.