Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 190

Search results for: Robotic

190 An Application of Path Planning Algorithms for Autonomous Inspection of Buried Pipes with Swarm Robots

Authors: Richard Molyneux, Christopher Parrott, Kirill Horoshenkov

Abstract:

This paper aims to demonstrate how various algorithms can be implemented within swarms of autonomous robots to provide continuous inspection within underground pipeline networks. Current methods of fault detection within pipes are costly, time consuming and inefficient. As such, solutions tend toward a more reactive approach, repairing faults, as opposed to proactively seeking leaks and blockages. The paper presents an efficient inspection method, showing that autonomous swarm robotics is a viable way of monitoring underground infrastructure. Tailored adaptations of various Vehicle Routing Problems (VRP) and path-planning algorithms provide a customised inspection procedure for complicated networks of underground pipes. The performance of multiple algorithms is compared to determine their effectiveness and feasibility. Notable inspirations come from ant colonies and stigmergy, graph theory, the k-Chinese Postman Problem ( -CPP) and traffic theory. Unlike most swarm behaviours which rely on fast communication between agents, underground pipe networks are a highly challenging communication environment with extremely limited communication ranges. This is due to the extreme variability in the pipe conditions and relatively high attenuation of acoustic and radio waves with which robots would usually communicate. This paper illustrates how to optimise the inspection process and how to increase the frequency with which the robots pass each other, without compromising the routes they are able to take to cover the whole network.

Keywords: Swarm Intelligence, Vehicle Routing Problem, autonomous inspection, buried pipes, stigmergy

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189 Monomial Form Approach to Rectangular Surface Modeling

Authors: Taweechai Nuntawisuttiwong, Natasha Dejdumrong

Abstract:

Geometric modeling plays an important role in the constructions and manufacturing of curve, surface and solid modeling. Their algorithms are critically important not only in the automobile, ship and aircraft manufacturing business, but are also absolutely necessary in a wide variety of modern applications, e.g., robotics, optimization, computer vision, data analytics and visualization. The calculation and display of geometric objects can be accomplished by these six techniques: Polynomial basis, Recursive, Iterative, Coefficient matrix, Polar form approach and Pyramidal algorithms. In this research, the coefficient matrix (simply called monomial form approach) will be used to model polynomial rectangular patches, i.e., Said-Ball, Wang-Ball, DP, Dejdumrong and NB1 surfaces. Some examples of the monomial forms for these surface modeling are illustrated in many aspects, e.g., construction, derivatives, model transformation, degree elevation and degress reduction.

Keywords: rectangular surfaces, CAGD curves, monomial matrix applications, Monomial form

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188 A Study on the Factors Affecting Student Behavior Intention to Attend Robotics Courses at the Primary and Secondary School Levels

Authors: Jingwen Shan

Abstract:

In order to explore the key factors affecting the robot program learning intention of school students, this study takes the technology acceptance model as the theoretical basis and invites 167 students from Jiading District of Shanghai as the research subjects. In the robot course, the model of school students on their learning behavior is constructed. By verifying the causal path relationship between variables, it is concluded that teachers can enhance students’ perceptual usefulness to robotics courses by enhancing subjective norms, entertainment perception, and reducing technical anxiety, such as focusing on the gradual progress of programming and analyzing learner characteristics. Students can improve perceived ease of use by enhancing self-efficacy. At the same time, robot hardware designers can optimize in terms of entertainment and interactivity, which will directly or indirectly increase the learning intention of the robot course. By changing these factors, the learning behavior of primary and secondary school students can be more sustainable.

Keywords: TAM, primary and secondary school students, learning behavior intentions, robot courses

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187 A Brain Controlled Robotic Gait Trainer for Neurorehabilitation

Authors: Qazi Umer Jamil, Abubakr Siddique, Mubeen Ur Rehman, Nida Aziz, Mohsin I. Tiwana

Abstract:

This paper discusses a brain controlled robotic gait trainer for neurorehabilitation of Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) patients. Patients suffering from Spinal Cord Injuries (SCI) become unable to execute motion control of their lower proximities due to degeneration of spinal cord neurons. The presented approach can help SCI patients in neuro-rehabilitation training by directly translating patient motor imagery into walkers motion commands and thus bypassing spinal cord neurons completely. A non-invasive EEG based brain-computer interface is used for capturing patient neural activity. For signal processing and classification, an open source software (OpenVibe) is used. Classifiers categorize the patient motor imagery (MI) into a specific set of commands that are further translated into walker motion commands. The robotic walker also employs fall detection for ensuring safety of patient during gait training and can act as a support for SCI patients. The gait trainer is tested with subjects, and satisfactory results were achieved.

Keywords: Neurorehabilitation, brain computer interface (BCI), gait trainer, Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)

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186 Fast Return Path Planning for Agricultural Autonomous Terrestrial Robot in a Known Field

Authors: Carlo Cernicchiaro, Pedro D. Gaspar, Martim L. Aguiar

Abstract:

The agricultural sector is becoming more critical than ever in view of the expected overpopulation of the Earth. The introduction of robotic solutions in this field is an increasingly researched topic to make the most of the Earth's resources, thus going to avoid the problems of wear and tear of the human body due to the harsh agricultural work, and open the possibility of a constant careful processing 24 hours a day. This project is realized for a terrestrial autonomous robot aimed to navigate in an orchard collecting fallen peaches below the trees. When it receives the signal indicating the low battery, it has to return to the docking station where it will replace its battery and then return to the last work point and resume its routine. Considering a preset path in orchards with tree rows with variable length by which the robot goes iteratively using the algorithm D*. In case of low battery, the D* algorithm is still used to determine the fastest return path to the docking station as well as to come back from the docking station to the last work point. MATLAB simulations were performed to analyze the flexibility and adaptability of the developed algorithm. The simulation results show an enormous potential for adaptability, particularly in view of the irregularity of orchard field, since it is not flat and undergoes modifications over time from fallen branch as well as from other obstacles and constraints. The D* algorithm determines the best route in spite of the irregularity of the terrain. Moreover, in this work, it will be shown a possible solution to improve the initial points tracking and reduce time between movements.

Keywords: Autonomous, Path Planning, fastest return path, docking station, agricultural terrestrial robot

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185 Designing a Robust Controller for a 6 Linkage Robot

Authors: G. Khamooshian

Abstract:

One of the main points of application of the mechanisms of the series and parallel is the subject of managing them. The control of this mechanism and similar mechanisms is one that has always been the intention of the scholars. On the other hand, modeling the behavior of the system is difficult due to the large number of its parameters, and it leads to complex equations that are difficult to solve and eventually difficult to control. In this paper, a six-linkage robot has been presented that could be used in different areas such as medical robots. Using these robots needs a robust control. In this paper, the system equations are first found, and then the system conversion function is written. A new controller has been designed for this robot which could be used in other parallel robots and could be very useful. Parallel robots are so important in robotics because of their stability, so methods for control of them are important and the robust controller, especially in parallel robots, makes a sense.

Keywords: Control, parallel robot

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184 An Inflatable and Foldable Knee Exosuit Based on Intelligent Management of Biomechanical Energy

Authors: Jing Fang, Yao Cui, Mingming Wang, Shengli She, Jianping Yuan

Abstract:

Wearable robotics is a potential solution in aiding gait rehabilitation of lower limbs dyskinesia patients, such as knee osteoarthritis or stroke afflicted patients. Many wearable robots have been developed in the form of rigid exoskeletons, but their bulk devices, high cost and control complexity hinder their popularity in the field of gait rehabilitation. Thus, the development of a portable, compliant and low-cost wearable robot for gait rehabilitation is necessary. Inspired by Chinese traditional folding fans and balloon inflators, the authors present an inflatable, foldable and variable stiffness knee exosuit (IFVSKE) in this paper. The pneumatic actuator of IFVSKE was fabricated in the shape of folding fans by using thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) fabric materials. The geometric and mechanical properties of IFVSKE were characterized with experimental methods. To assist the knee joint smartly, an intelligent control profile for IFVSKE was proposed based on the concept of full-cycle energy management of the biomechanical energy during human movement. The biomechanical energy of knee joints in a walking gait cycle of patients could be collected and released to assist the joint motion just by adjusting the inner pressure of IFVSKE. Finally, a healthy subject was involved to walk with and without the IFVSKE to evaluate the assisting effects.

Keywords: Wearable Robotics, gait rehabilitation, biomechanical energy management, knee exosuit

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183 Affective Robots: Evaluation of Automatic Emotion Recognition Approaches on a Humanoid Robot towards Emotionally Intelligent Machines

Authors: Silvia Santano Guillén, Luigi Lo Iacono, Christian Meder

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One of the main aims of current social robotic research is to improve the robots’ abilities to interact with humans. In order to achieve an interaction similar to that among humans, robots should be able to communicate in an intuitive and natural way and appropriately interpret human affects during social interactions. Similarly to how humans are able to recognize emotions in other humans, machines are capable of extracting information from the various ways humans convey emotions—including facial expression, speech, gesture or text—and using this information for improved human computer interaction. This can be described as Affective Computing, an interdisciplinary field that expands into otherwise unrelated fields like psychology and cognitive science and involves the research and development of systems that can recognize and interpret human affects. To leverage these emotional capabilities by embedding them in humanoid robots is the foundation of the concept Affective Robots, which has the objective of making robots capable of sensing the user’s current mood and personality traits and adapt their behavior in the most appropriate manner based on that. In this paper, the emotion recognition capabilities of the humanoid robot Pepper are experimentally explored, based on the facial expressions for the so-called basic emotions, as well as how it performs in contrast to other state-of-the-art approaches with both expression databases compiled in academic environments and real subjects showing posed expressions as well as spontaneous emotional reactions. The experiments’ results show that the detection accuracy amongst the evaluated approaches differs substantially. The introduced experiments offer a general structure and approach for conducting such experimental evaluations. The paper further suggests that the most meaningful results are obtained by conducting experiments with real subjects expressing the emotions as spontaneous reactions.

Keywords: Emotion recognition, Affective Computing, Social Robots, human-robot-interaction (HRI), humanoid robot

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182 A Pilot Study of Robot Reminiscence in Dementia Care

Authors: Ryuji Yamazaki, Masahiro Kochi, Weiran Zhu, Hiroko Kase

Abstract:

In care for older adults, behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD) like agitation and aggression are distressing for patients and their caretakers, often resulting in premature institutionalization with increased costs of care. To improve mood and mitigate symptoms, as a non-pharmaceutical approach, emotion-oriented therapy like reminiscence work is adopted in face-to-face communication. Telecommunication support is expected to be provided by robotic media as a bridge for digital divide for those with dementia and facilitate social interaction both verbally and nonverbally. The purpose of this case study is to explore the conditions in which robotic media can effectively attract attention from older adults with dementia and promote their well-being. As a pilot study, we introduced the pillow-phone Hugvie®, a huggable humanly shaped communication medium to five residents with dementia at a care facility, to investigate how the following conditions work for the elderly when they use the medium; 1) no sound, 2) radio, non-interactive, 3) daily conversation, and 4) reminiscence work. As a result, under condition 4, reminiscence work, the five participants kept concentration in interacting with the medium for a longer duration than other conditions. In condition 4, they also showed larger amount of utterances than under other conditions. These results indicate that providing topics related to personal histories through robotic media could affect communication positively and should, therefore, be further investigated. In addition, the issue of ethical implications by using persuasive technology that affects emotions and behaviors of older adults is also discussed.

Keywords: BPSD, reminiscence, tactile telecommunication, utterances

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181 Low-Cost Robotic-Assisted Laparoscope

Authors: Ege Can Onal, Enver Ersen, Meltem Elitas

Abstract:

Laparoscopy is a surgical operation, well known as keyhole surgery. The operation is performed through small holes, hence, scars of a patient become much smaller, patients can recover in a short time and the hospital stay becomes shorter in comparison to an open surgery. Several tools are used at laparoscopic operations; among them, the laparoscope has a crucial role. It provides the vision during the operation, which will be the main focus in here. Since the operation area is very small, motion of the surgical tools might be limited in laparoscopic operations compared to traditional surgeries. To overcome this limitation, most of the laparoscopic tools have become more precise, dexterous, multi-functional or automated. Here, we present a robotic-assisted laparoscope that is controlled with pedals directly by a surgeon. Thus, the movement of the laparoscope might be controlled better, so there will not be a need to calibrate the camera during the operation. The need for an assistant that controls the movement of the laparoscope will be eliminated. The duration of the laparoscopic operation might be shorter since the surgeon will directly operate the camera.

Keywords: Minimally Invasive Surgery, Laparoscopy, low-cost, laparoscope, robotic-assisted surgery

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180 Autonomic Management for Mobile Robot Battery Degradation

Authors: Martin Doran, Roy Sterritt, George Wilkie

Abstract:

The majority of today’s mobile robots are very dependent on battery power. Mobile robots can operate untethered for a number of hours but eventually they will need to recharge their batteries in-order to continue to function. While computer processing and sensors have become cheaper and more powerful each year, battery development has progress very little. They are slow to re-charge, inefficient and lagging behind in the general progression of robotic development we see today. However, batteries are relatively cheap and when fully charged, can supply high power output necessary for operating heavy mobile robots. As there are no cheap alternatives to batteries, we need to find efficient ways to manage the power that batteries provide during their operational lifetime. This paper proposes the use of autonomic principles of self-adaption to address the behavioral changes a battery experiences as it gets older. In life, as we get older, we cannot perform tasks in the same way as we did in our youth; these tasks generally take longer to perform and require more of our energy to complete. Batteries also suffer from a form of degradation. As a battery gets older, it loses the ability to retain the same charge capacity it would have when brand new. This paper investigates how we can adapt the current state of a battery charge and cycle count, to the requirements of a mobile robot to perform its tasks.

Keywords: Autonomic, degradation, self-adaptive, self-optimizing

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179 Attribute Based Comparison and Selection of Modular Self-Reconfigurable Robot Using Multiple Attribute Decision Making Approach

Authors: Manpreet Singh, V. P. Agrawal, Gurmanjot Singh Bhatti

Abstract:

From the last decades, there is a significant technological advancement in the field of robotics, and a number of modular self-reconfigurable robots were introduced that can help in space exploration, bucket to stuff, search, and rescue operation during earthquake, etc. As there are numbers of self-reconfigurable robots, choosing the optimum one is always a concern for robot user since there is an increase in available features, facilities, complexity, etc. The objective of this research work is to present a multiple attribute decision making based methodology for coding, evaluation, comparison ranking and selection of modular self-reconfigurable robots using a technique for order preferences by similarity to ideal solution approach. However, 86 attributes that affect the structure and performance are identified. A database for modular self-reconfigurable robot on the basis of different pertinent attribute is generated. This database is very useful for the user, for selecting a robot that suits their operational needs. Two visual methods namely linear graph and spider chart are proposed for ranking of modular self-reconfigurable robots. Using five robots (Atron, Smores, Polybot, M-Tran 3, Superbot), an example is illustrated, and raking of the robots is successfully done, which shows that Smores is the best robot for the operational need illustrated, and this methodology is found to be very effective and simple to use.

Keywords: Morphogenesis, Scalability, TOPSIS, self-reconfigurable robots, MADM

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178 Application of Design Thinking for Technology Transfer of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems for the Creative Industry

Authors: V. Santamarina Campos, M. de Miguel Molina, B. de Miguel Molina, M. Á. Carabal Montagud

Abstract:

With this contribution, we want to show a successful example of the application of the Design Thinking methodology, in the European project 'Technology transfer of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) for the creative industry'. The use of this methodology has allowed us to design and build a drone, based on the real needs of prospective users. It has demonstrated that this is a powerful tool for generating innovative ideas in the field of robotics, by focusing its effectiveness on understanding and solving real user needs. In this way, with the support of an interdisciplinary team, comprised of creatives, engineers and economists, together with the collaboration of prospective users from three European countries, a non-linear work dynamic has been created. This teamwork has generated a sense of appreciation towards the creative industries, through continuously adaptive, inventive, and playful collaboration and communication, which has facilitated the development of prototypes. These have been designed to enable filming and photography in interior spaces, within 13 sectors of European creative industries: Advertising, Architecture, Fashion, Film, Antiques and Museums, Music, Photography, Televison, Performing Arts, Publishing, Arts and Crafts, Design and Software. Furthermore, it has married the real needs of the creative industries, with what is technologically and commercially viable. As a result, a product of great value has been obtained, which offers new business opportunities for small companies across this sector.

Keywords: Robotics, Innovation, Methodology, Design Thinking, creative industries, storytelling, focus group, par, RPAS, end-users, aerial film, design for effectiveness, active toolkit, storyboards, indoor drone, TRL

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177 Mathematical Description of Functional Motion and Application as a Feeding Mode for General Purpose Assistive Robots

Authors: Martin Leroux, Sylvain Brisebois

Abstract:

Eating a meal is among the Activities of Daily Living, but it takes a lot of time and effort for people with physical or functional limitations. Dedicated technologies are cumbersome and not portable, while general-purpose assistive robots such as wheelchair-based manipulators are too hard to control for elaborate continuous motion like eating. Eating with such devices has not previously been automated, since there existed no description of a feeding motion for uncontrolled environments. In this paper, we introduce a feeding mode for assistive manipulators, including a mathematical description of trajectories for motions that are difficult to perform manually such as gathering and scooping food at a defined/desired pace. We implement these trajectories in a sequence of movements for a semi-automated feeding mode which can be controlled with a very simple 3-button interface, allowing the user to have control over the feeding pace. Finally, we demonstrate the feeding mode with a JACO robotic arm and compare the eating speed, measured in bites per minute of three eating methods: a healthy person eating unaided, a person with upper limb limitations or disability using JACO with manual control, and a person with limitations using JACO with the feeding mode. We found that the feeding mode allows eating about 5 bites per minute, which should be sufficient to eat a meal under 30min.

Keywords: Human-Robot Interaction, assistive robotics, elderly care, Trajectory Design, automated feeding

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176 Scorbot-ER 4U Using Forward Kinematics Modelling and Analysis

Authors: D. Maneetham, L. Sivhour

Abstract:

Robotic arm manipulators are widely used to accomplish many kinds of tasks. SCORBOT-ER 4u is a 5-degree of freedom (DOF) vertical articulated educational robotic arm, and all joints are revolute. It is specifically designed to perform pick and place task with its gripper. The pick and place task consists of consideration of the end effector coordinate of the robotic arm and the desired position coordinate in its workspace. This paper describes about forward kinematics modeling and analysis of the robotic end effector motion through joint space. The kinematics problems are defined by the transformation from the Cartesian space to the joint space. Denavit-Hartenberg (D-H) model is used in order to model the robotic links and joints with 4x4 homogeneous matrix. The forward kinematics model is also developed and simulated in MATLAB. The mathematical model is validated by using robotic toolbox in MATLAB. By using this method, it may be applicable to get the end effector coordinate of this robotic arm and other similar types to this arm. The software development of SCORBOT-ER 4u is also described here. PC-and EtherCAT based control technology from BECKHOFF is used to control the arm to express the pick and place task.

Keywords: Forward Kinematics, D-H model, robotic toolbox, PC-and EtherCAT based control

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175 A Method of Drilling a Ground Using a Robotic Arm

Authors: Lotfi Beji, Laredj Benchikh

Abstract:

Underground tunnel face bolting and pipe umbrella reinforcement are one of the most challenging tasks in construction whether industrial or not, and infrastructures such as roads or pipelines. It is one of the first sectors of economic activity in the world. Through a variety of soil and rock, a cyclic Conventional Tunneling Method (CTM) remains the best one for projects with highly variable ground conditions or shapes. CTM is the only alternative for the renovation of existing tunnels and creating emergency exit. During the drilling process, a wide variety of non-desired vibrations may arise, and a method using a robot arm is proposed. The main kinds of drilling through vibration here is the bit-bouncing phenomenon (resonant axial vibration). Hence, assisting the task by a robot arm may play an important role on drilling performances and security. We propose to control the axial-vibration phenomenon along the drillstring at a practical resonant frequency, and embed a Resonant Sonic Drilling Head (RSDH) as a robot end effector for drilling. Many questionable industry drilling criteria and stability are discussed in this paper.

Keywords: Drilling, robotic arm, resonant vibration, PDE control

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174 Laser Registration and Supervisory Control of neuroArm Robotic Surgical System

Authors: Hamidreza Hoshyarmanesh, Hosein Madieh, Sanju Lama, Yaser Maddahi, Garnette R. Sutherland, Kourosh Zareinia

Abstract:

This paper illustrates the concept of an algorithm to register specified markers on the neuroArm surgical manipulators, an image-guided MR-compatible tele-operated robot for microsurgery and stereotaxy. Two range-finding algorithms, namely time-of-flight and phase-shift, are evaluated for registration and supervisory control. The time-of-flight approach is implemented in a semi-field experiment to determine the precise position of a tiny retro-reflective moving object. The moving object simulates a surgical tool tip. The tool is a target that would be connected to the neuroArm end-effector during surgery inside the magnet bore of the MR imaging system. In order to apply flight approach, a 905-nm pulsed laser diode and an avalanche photodiode are utilized as the transmitter and receiver, respectively. For the experiment, a high frequency time to digital converter was designed using a field-programmable gate arrays. In the phase-shift approach, a continuous green laser beam with a wavelength of 530 nm was used as the transmitter. Results showed that a positioning error of 0.1 mm occurred when the scanner-target point distance was set in the range of 2.5 to 3 meters. The effectiveness of this non-contact approach exhibited that the method could be employed as an alternative for conventional mechanical registration arm. Furthermore, the approach is not limited by physical contact and extension of joint angles.

Keywords: supervisory control, Robot-Assisted Surgery, intraoperative MR imaging, neuroArm, real time registration

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173 Representations of Childcare Robots as a Controversial Issue

Authors: Raya A. Jones

Abstract:

This paper interrogates online representations of robot companions for children, including promotional material by manufacturers, media articles and technology blogs. The significance of the study lies in its contribution to understanding attitudes to robots. The prospect of childcare robots is particularly controversial ethically, and is associated with emotive arguments. The sampled material is restricted to relatively recent posts (the past three years) though the analysis identifies both continuous and changing themes across the past decade. The method extrapolates social representations theory towards examining the ways in which information about robotic products is provided for the general public. Implications for social acceptance of robot companions for the home and robot ethics are considered.

Keywords: Ethics, Social Representations, acceptance of robots, childcare robots

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172 A Robotic “Puppet Master” Application to ASD Therapeutic Support

Authors: Sophie Sakka, Rénald Gaboriau

Abstract:

This paper describes a preliminary work aimed at setting a therapeutic support for autistic teenagers using three humanoid robots NAO shared by ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) subjects. The studied population had attended successfully a first year program, and were observed with a second year program using the robots. This paper focuses on the content and the effects of the second year program. The approach is based on a master puppet concept: the subjects program the robots, and use them as an extension for communication. Twenty sessions were organized, alternating ten preparatory sessions and ten robotics programming sessions. During the preparatory sessions, the subjects write a story to be played by the robots. During the robot programming sessions, the subjects program the motions to be realized to make the robot tell the story. The program was concluded by a public performance. The experiment involves five ASD teenagers aged 12-15, who had all attended the first year robotics training. As a result, a progress in voluntary and organized communication skills of the five subjects was observed, leading to improvements in social organization, focus, voluntary communication, programming, reading and writing abilities. The changes observed in the subjects general behavior took place in a short time, and could be observed from one robotics session to the next one. The approach allowed the subjects to draw the limits of their body with respect to the environment, and therefore helped them confronting the world with less anxiety.

Keywords: Robot, Autism spectrum disorder, therapeutic support, rob’autism

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171 A Robotic Cube to Preschool Children for Acquiring the Mathematical and Colours Concepts

Authors: Ahmed Amin Mousa, Tamer M. Ismail, M. Abd El Salam

Abstract:

This work presents a robot called Conceptual Robotic Cube, CR-Cube. The robot can be used as an educational tool for children from the age of three. It has a cube shape attached with a camera colours sensor. In addition, it contains four wheels to move smoothly. The researchers prepared a questionnaire to measure the efficiency of the robot. The design and the questionnaire was presented to 11 experts who agreed that the robot is appropriate for learning numbering and colours for preschool children.

Keywords: Early Childhood Education, CR-Cube, robotic cube, conceptual robot, conceptual cube, colour concept

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170 Robot Technology Impact on Dyslexic Students’ English Learning

Authors: Khaled Hamdan, Abid Amorri, Fatima Hamdan

Abstract:

Involving students in English language learning process and achieving an adequate English language proficiency in the target language can be a great challenge for both teachers and students. This can prove even a far greater challenge to engage students with special needs (Dyslexia) if they have physical impairment and inadequate mastery of basic communicative language competence/proficiency in the target language. From this perspective, technology like robots can probably be used to enhance learning process for the special needs students who have extensive communication needs, who face continuous struggle to interact with their peers and teachers and meet academic requirements. Robots, precisely NAO, can probably provide them with the perfect opportunity to practice social and communication skills, and meet their English academic requirements. This research paper aims to identify to what extent robots can be used to improve students’ social interaction and communication skills and to understand the potential for robotics-based education in motivating and engaging UAEU dyslexic students to meet university requirements. To reach this end, the paper will explore several factors that come into play – Motion Level-involving cognitive activities, Interaction Level-involving language processing, Behavior Level -establishing a close relationship with the robot and Appraisal Level- focusing on dyslexia students’ achievement in the target language.

Keywords: Interaction, Dyslexia, Motion, Robot Technology, behavior and appraisal levels, social and communication skills

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169 Virtual 3D Environments for Image-Based Navigation Algorithms

Authors: V. B. Bastos, M. P. Lima, P. R. G. Kurka

Abstract:

This paper applies to the creation of virtual 3D environments for the study and development of mobile robot image based navigation algorithms and techniques, which need to operate robustly and efficiently. The test of these algorithms can be performed in a physical way, from conducting experiments on a prototype, or by numerical simulations. Current simulation platforms for robotic applications do not have flexible and updated models for image rendering, being unable to reproduce complex light effects and materials. Thus, it is necessary to create a test platform that integrates sophisticated simulated applications of real environments for navigation, with data and image processing. This work proposes the development of a high-level platform for building 3D model’s environments and the test of image-based navigation algorithms for mobile robots. Techniques were used for applying texture and lighting effects in order to accurately represent the generation of rendered images regarding the real world version. The application will integrate image processing scripts, trajectory control, dynamic modeling and simulation techniques for physics representation and picture rendering with the open source 3D creation suite - Blender.

Keywords: Simulation, Data Visualization, Mobile robot, Visual Navigation

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168 Metal Ship and Robotic Car: A Hands-On Activity to Develop Scientific and Engineering Skills for High School Students

Authors: Jutharat Sunprasert, Ekapong Hirunsirisawat, Narongrit Waraporn, Somporn Peansukmanee

Abstract:

Metal Ship and Robotic Car is one of the hands-on activities in the course, the Fundamental of Engineering that can be divided into three parts. The first part, the metal ships, was made by using engineering drawings, physics and mathematics knowledge. The second part is where the students learned how to construct a robotic car and control it using computer programming. In the last part, the students had to combine the workings of these two objects in the final testing. This aim of study was to investigate the effectiveness of hands-on activity by integrating Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) concepts to develop scientific and engineering skills. The results showed that the majority of students felt this hands-on activity lead to an increased confidence level in the integration of STEM. Moreover, 48% of all students engaged well with the STEM concepts. Students could obtain the knowledge of STEM through hands-on activities with the topics science and mathematics, engineering drawing, engineering workshop and computer programming; most students agree and strongly agree with this learning process. This indicated that the hands-on activity: “Metal Ship and Robotic Car” is a useful tool to integrate each aspect of STEM. Furthermore, hands-on activities positively influence a student’s interest which leads to increased learning achievement and also in developing scientific and engineering skills.

Keywords: STEM Education, Computer Programming, hands-on activity, metal work

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167 Electromyography Pattern Classification with Laplacian Eigenmaps in Human Running

Authors: Elnaz Lashgari, Emel Demircan

Abstract:

Electromyography (EMG) is one of the most important interfaces between humans and robots for rehabilitation. Decoding this signal helps to recognize muscle activation and converts it into smooth motion for the robots. Detecting each muscle’s pattern during walking and running is vital for improving the quality of a patient’s life. In this study, EMG data from 10 muscles in 10 subjects at 4 different speeds were analyzed. EMG signals are nonlinear with high dimensionality. To deal with this challenge, we extracted some features in time-frequency domain and used manifold learning and Laplacian Eigenmaps algorithm to find the intrinsic features that represent data in low-dimensional space. We then used the Bayesian classifier to identify various patterns of EMG signals for different muscles across a range of running speeds. The best result for vastus medialis muscle corresponds to 97.87±0.69 for sensitivity and 88.37±0.79 for specificity with 97.07±0.29 accuracy using Bayesian classifier. The results of this study provide important insight into human movement and its application for robotics research.

Keywords: electrocardiogram, manifold learning, Laplacian Eigenmaps, running pattern

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166 MAGNI Dynamics: A Vision-Based Kinematic and Dynamic Upper-Limb Model for Intelligent Robotic Rehabilitation

Authors: Alexandros Lioulemes, Michail Theofanidis, Varun Kanal, Konstantinos Tsiakas, Maher Abujelala, Chris Collander, William B. Townsend, Angie Boisselle, Fillia Makedon

Abstract:

This paper presents a home-based robot-rehabilitation instrument, called ”MAGNI Dynamics”, that utilized a vision-based kinematic/dynamic module and an adaptive haptic feedback controller. The system is expected to provide personalized rehabilitation by adjusting its resistive and supportive behavior according to a fuzzy intelligence controller that acts as an inference system, which correlates the user’s performance to different stiffness factors. The vision module uses the Kinect’s skeletal tracking to monitor the user’s effort in an unobtrusive and safe way, by estimating the torque that affects the user’s arm. The system’s torque estimations are justified by capturing electromyographic data from primitive hand motions (Shoulder Abduction and Shoulder Forward Flexion). Moreover, we present and analyze how the Barrett WAM generates a force-field with a haptic controller to support or challenge the users. Experiments show that by shifting the proportional value, that corresponds to different stiffness factors of the haptic path, can potentially help the user to improve his/her motor skills. Finally, potential areas for future research are discussed, that address how a rehabilitation robotic framework may include multisensing data, to improve the user’s recovery process.

Keywords: Dynamics, Kinematics, rehabilitation robotics, Human-Robot Interaction, kinect, haptic control, artificial intelligence

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165 Fall Avoidance Control of Wheeled Inverted Pendulum Type Robotic Wheelchair While Climbing Stairs

Authors: Nan Ding, Motoki Shino, Nobuyasu Tomokuni, Genki Murata

Abstract:

The wheelchair is the major means of transport for physically disabled people. However, it cannot overcome architectural barriers such as curbs and stairs. In this paper, the authors proposed a method to avoid falling down of a wheeled inverted pendulum type robotic wheelchair for climbing stairs. The problem of this system is that the feedback gain of the wheels cannot be set high due to modeling errors and gear backlash, which results in the movement of wheels. Therefore, the wheels slide down the stairs or collide with the side of the stairs, and finally the wheelchair falls down. To avoid falling down, the authors proposed a slider control strategy based on skyhook model in order to decrease the movement of wheels, and a rotary link control strategy based on the staircase dimensions in order to avoid collision or slide down. The effectiveness of the proposed fall avoidance control strategy was validated by ODE simulations and the prototype wheelchair.

Keywords: skyhook, EPW, fall avoidance control, wheeled inverted pendulum

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164 Quantifying Key Factors Affecting Leagile Manufacturing System

Authors: Naveen Virmani, Rajeev Saha, Rajeshwar Sahai

Abstract:

In today’s market, striving hard has become necessary for the industries to survive due to the intense competition and globalization. In earlier days, there were few sellers and limited numbers of buyers, so customers were having fewer options to buy the product. But today, the market is highly competitive and volatile. Industries are focusing on robotics, advance manufacturing methods like AJM (Abrasive Jet Machining), EDM (Electric Discharge Machining), ECM (Electrochemical Machining) etc., CAD/CAM, CAE to make quality products and market them in shortest possible time. Leagile manufacturing system is ensuring best available solution at minimum cost to meet the market demand. This paper tries to assimilate the concept of Leagile manufacturing system in today’s scenario and evaluating key factors affecting Leagile manufacturing using digraph technique.

Keywords: Agile Manufacturing, Lean manufacturing, digraph, leagile manufacturing

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163 Application of Robotics to Assemble a Used Fuel Container in the Canadian Used Fuel Packing Plant

Authors: Dimitrie Marinceu

Abstract:

The newest Canadian Used Fuel Container (UFC)- (called also “Mark II”) modifies the design approach for its Assembly Robotic Cell (ARC) in the Canadian Used (Nuclear) Fuel Packing Plant (UFPP). Some of the robotic design solutions are presented in this paper. The design indicates that robots and manipulators are expected to be used in the Canadian UFPP. As normally, the UFPP design will incorporate redundancy of all equipment to allow expedient recovery from any postulated upset conditions. Overall, this paper suggests that robot usage will have a significant positive impact on nuclear safety, quality, productivity, and reliability.

Keywords: Deep Geological Repository, used fuel packing plant, robotic assembly cell, used fuel container

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162 Control Strategies for a Robot for Interaction with Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Authors: Vinicius Binotte, Guilherme Baldo, Christiane Goulart, Carlos Valadão, Eliete Caldeira, Teodiano Bastos

Abstract:

Socially assistive robotic has become increasingly active and it is present in therapies of people affected for several neurobehavioral conditions, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). In fact, robots have played a significant role for positive interaction with children with ASD, by stimulating their social and cognitive skills. This work introduces a mobile socially-assistive robot, which was built for interaction with children with ASD, using non-linear control techniques for this interaction.

Keywords: autism, Mobile robot, Autonomous Control, Socially Assistive Robotics

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161 A Comparison of Inverse Simulation-Based Fault Detection in a Simple Robotic Rover with a Traditional Model-Based Method

Authors: Murray L. Ireland, Kevin J. Worrall, Rebecca Mackenzie, Thaleia Flessa, Euan McGookin, Douglas Thomson

Abstract:

Robotic rovers which are designed to work in extra-terrestrial environments present a unique challenge in terms of the reliability and availability of systems throughout the mission. Should some fault occur, with the nearest human potentially millions of kilometres away, detection and identification of the fault must be performed solely by the robot and its subsystems. Faults in the system sensors are relatively straightforward to detect, through the residuals produced by comparison of the system output with that of a simple model. However, faults in the input, that is, the actuators of the system, are harder to detect. A step change in the input signal, caused potentially by the loss of an actuator, can propagate through the system, resulting in complex residuals in multiple outputs. These residuals can be difficult to isolate or distinguish from residuals caused by environmental disturbances. While a more complex fault detection method or additional sensors could be used to solve these issues, an alternative is presented here. Using inverse simulation (InvSim), the inputs and outputs of the mathematical model of the rover system are reversed. Thus, for a desired trajectory, the corresponding actuator inputs are obtained. A step fault near the input then manifests itself as a step change in the residual between the system inputs and the input trajectory obtained through inverse simulation. This approach avoids the need for additional hardware on a mass- and power-critical system such as the rover. The InvSim fault detection method is applied to a simple four-wheeled rover in simulation. Additive system faults and an external disturbance force and are applied to the vehicle in turn, such that the dynamic response and sensor output of the rover are impacted. Basic model-based fault detection is then employed to provide output residuals which may be analysed to provide information on the fault/disturbance. InvSim-based fault detection is then employed, similarly providing input residuals which provide further information on the fault/disturbance. The input residuals are shown to provide clearer information on the location and magnitude of an input fault than the output residuals. Additionally, they can allow faults to be more clearly discriminated from environmental disturbances.

Keywords: Fault Detection, inverse simulation, rover, ground robot

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