View Chapter

Chapter 23 — Biomimetic Robots

Kyu-Jin Cho and Robert Wood

Biomimetic robot designs attempt to translate biological principles into engineered systems, replacing more classical engineering solutions in order to achieve a function observed in the natural system. This chapter will focus on mechanism design for bio-inspired robots that replicate key principles from nature with novel engineering solutions. The challenges of biomimetic design include developing a deep understanding of the relevant natural system and translating this understanding into engineering design rules. This often entails the development of novel fabrication and actuation to realize the biomimetic design.

This chapter consists of four sections. In Sect. 23.1, we will define what biomimetic design entails, and contrast biomimetic robots with bio-inspired robots. In Sect. 23.2, we will discuss the fundamental components for developing a biomimetic robot. In Sect. 23.3, we will review detailed biomimetic designs that have been developed for canonical robot locomotion behaviors including flapping-wing flight, jumping, crawling, wall climbing, and swimming. In Sect. 23.4, we will discuss the enabling technologies for these biomimetic designs including material and fabrication.

RoACH: a 2.4 gram, untethered, crawling hexapod robot

Author  Aaron M. Hoover, Erik Steltz, Ronald S. Fearing

Video ID : 286

The robotic autonomous crawling hexapod (RoACH) is made using lightweight composites with integrated flexural hinges. It is actuated by two shape-memory-alloy wires and controlled by a PIC microprocessor. It can communicate over IrDA and run untethered for more than nine minutes on a single charge.

Pop-up fabrication of the Harvard Monolithic Bee (Mobee)

Author  Robert J. Wood

Video ID : 398

The Harvard Monolithic Bee is a millimeter-scale flapping winged robotic insect produced using printed-circuit MEMS (PC-MEMS) techniques. This video describes the manufacturing process, including pop-up book inspired assembly. This work was funded by the NSF, the Wyss Institute, and the ASEE. Music: D-Song by Bonobo.

Chapter 76 — Evolutionary Robotics

Stefano Nolfi, Josh Bongard, Phil Husbands and Dario Floreano

Evolutionary Robotics is a method for automatically generating artificial brains and morphologies of autonomous robots. This approach is useful both for investigating the design space of robotic applications and for testing scientific hypotheses of biological mechanisms and processes. In this chapter we provide an overview of methods and results of Evolutionary Robotics with robots of different shapes, dimensions, and operation features. We consider both simulated and physical robots with special consideration to the transfer between the two worlds.

A swarm-bot of eight robots displaying coordinated motion

Author  Stefano Nolfi, Gianluca Baldassarre, Vito Trianni, Francesco Mondada, Marco Dorigo

Video ID : 115

Each robot is provided with an independent neural controller which determines the desired speed of the two wheels on the basis of the traction force caused by the movements of the other robots. The evolved robots are able to display coordinated-motion capability, independent from the way in which they are assembled, as well as to coordinate in carrying heavy objects.

Chapter 71 — Cognitive Human-Robot Interaction

Bilge Mutlu, Nicholas Roy and Selma Šabanović

A key research challenge in robotics is to design robotic systems with the cognitive capabilities necessary to support human–robot interaction. These systems will need to have appropriate representations of the world; the task at hand; the capabilities, expectations, and actions of their human counterparts; and how their own actions might affect the world, their task, and their human partners. Cognitive human–robot interaction is a research area that considers human(s), robot(s), and their joint actions as a cognitive system and seeks to create models, algorithms, and design guidelines to enable the design of such systems. Core research activities in this area include the development of representations and actions that allow robots to participate in joint activities with people; a deeper understanding of human expectations and cognitive responses to robot actions; and, models of joint activity for human–robot interaction. This chapter surveys these research activities by drawing on research questions and advances from a wide range of fields including computer science, cognitive science, linguistics, and robotics.

Robotic secrets revealed, Episode 1

Author  Greg Trafton

Video ID : 129

A Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) scientist shows a magic trick to a mobile-dextrous-social robot, demonstrating the robot's use and interpretation of gestures. The video highlights recent gesture-recognition work and NRL's novel cognitive architecture, ACT-R/E. While set within a popular game of skill, this video illustrates several Navy-relevant issues, including computational cognitive architecture which enables autonomous function, and integrates perceptual information with higher-level cognitive reasoning, gesture recognition for shoulder-to-shoulder human-robot interaction, and anticipation and learning on a robotic system. Such abilities will be critical for future, naval, autonomous systems for persistent surveillance, tactical mobile robots, and other autonomous platforms.

Chapter 23 — Biomimetic Robots

Kyu-Jin Cho and Robert Wood

Biomimetic robot designs attempt to translate biological principles into engineered systems, replacing more classical engineering solutions in order to achieve a function observed in the natural system. This chapter will focus on mechanism design for bio-inspired robots that replicate key principles from nature with novel engineering solutions. The challenges of biomimetic design include developing a deep understanding of the relevant natural system and translating this understanding into engineering design rules. This often entails the development of novel fabrication and actuation to realize the biomimetic design.

This chapter consists of four sections. In Sect. 23.1, we will define what biomimetic design entails, and contrast biomimetic robots with bio-inspired robots. In Sect. 23.2, we will discuss the fundamental components for developing a biomimetic robot. In Sect. 23.3, we will review detailed biomimetic designs that have been developed for canonical robot locomotion behaviors including flapping-wing flight, jumping, crawling, wall climbing, and swimming. In Sect. 23.4, we will discuss the enabling technologies for these biomimetic designs including material and fabrication.

Flytrap-inspired bi-stable gripper

Author  Seung-Won Kim, Kyu-Jin Cho

Video ID : 410

By using carbon-fiber, reinforced prepreg (CFRP) laminate as a leaf-and-shape memory alloy (SMA) spring actuator, we developed a novel bio-inspired flytrap robot.

Chapter 78 — Perceptual Robotics

Heinrich Bülthoff, Christian Wallraven and Martin A. Giese

Robots that share their environment with humans need to be able to recognize and manipulate objects and users, perform complex navigation tasks, and interpret and react to human emotional and communicative gestures. In all of these perceptual capabilities, the human brain, however, is still far ahead of robotic systems. Hence, taking clues from the way the human brain solves such complex perceptual tasks will help to design better robots. Similarly, once a robot interacts with humans, its behaviors and reactions will be judged by humans – movements of the robot, for example, should be fluid and graceful, and it should not evoke an eerie feeling when interacting with a user. In this chapter, we present Perceptual Robotics as the field of robotics that takes inspiration from perception research and neuroscience to, first, build better perceptual capabilities into robotic systems and, second, to validate the perceptual impact of robotic systems on the user.

Active in-hand object recognition

Author  Christian Wallraven

Video ID : 569

This video showcases the implementation of active object learning and recognition using the framework proposed in Browatzki et al. [1, 2]. The first phase shows the robot trying to learn the visual representation of several paper cups differing by a few key features. The robot executes a pre-programmed exploration program to look at the cup from all sides. The (very low-resolution) visual input is tracked and so-called key-frames are extracted which represent the (visual) exploration. After learning, the robot tries to recognize cups that have been placed into its hands using a similar exploration program based on visual information - due to the low-resolution input and the highly similar objects, the robot, however, fails to make the correct decision. The video then shows the second, advanced, exploration, which is based on actively seeking the view that is expected to provide maximum information about the object. For this, the robot embeds the learned visual information into a proprioceptive map indexed by the two joint angles of the hand. In this map, the robot now tries to predict the joint-angle combination that provides the most information about the object, given the current state of exploration. The implementation uses particle filtering to track a large number of object (view) hypotheses at the same time. Since the robot now uses a multisensory representation, the subsequent object-recognition trials are all correct, despite poor visual input and highly similar objects. References: [1] B Browatzki, V. Tikhanoff, G. Metta, H.H. Bülthoff, C. Wallraven: Active in-hand object recognition on a humanoid robot, IEEE Trans. Robot. 30(5), 1260-1269 (2014); [2] B. Browatzki, V. Tikhanoff, G. Metta, H.H. Bülthoff, C. Wallraven: Active object recognition on a humanoid robot, Proc. IEEE Int. Conf. Robot. Autom. (ICRA), St. Paul (2012), pp. 2021-2028.

Chapter 43 — Telerobotics

Günter Niemeyer, Carsten Preusche, Stefano Stramigioli and Dongjun Lee

In this chapter we present an overview of the field of telerobotics with a focus on control aspects. To acknowledge some of the earliest contributions and motivations the field has provided to robotics in general, we begin with a brief historical perspective and discuss some of the challenging applications. Then, after introducing and classifying the various system architectures and control strategies, we emphasize bilateral control and force feedback. This particular area has seen intense research work in the pursuit of telepresence. We also examine some of the emerging efforts, extending telerobotic concepts to unconventional systems and applications. Finally,we suggest some further reading for a closer engagement with the field.

JPL dual-arm telerobot system

Author  Antal K. Bejczy, Zoltan Szakaly

Video ID : 298

This video shows a dual-arm, force-reflecting telerobotic system developed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for space teleoperation applications of kinematically and dynamically different slave systems. Presented at ICRA 1990.

Chapter 69 — Physical Human-Robot Interaction

Sami Haddadin and Elizabeth Croft

Over the last two decades, the foundations for physical human–robot interaction (pHRI) have evolved from successful developments in mechatronics, control, and planning, leading toward safer lightweight robot designs and interaction control schemes that advance beyond the current capacities of existing high-payload and highprecision position-controlled industrial robots. Based on their ability to sense physical interaction, render compliant behavior along the robot structure, plan motions that respect human preferences, and generate interaction plans for collaboration and coaction with humans, these novel robots have opened up novel and unforeseen application domains, and have advanced the field of human safety in robotics.

This chapter gives an overview on the state of the art in pHRI as of the date of publication. First, the advances in human safety are outlined, addressing topics in human injury analysis in robotics and safety standards for pHRI. Then, the foundations of human-friendly robot design, including the development of lightweight and intrinsically flexible force/torque-controlled machines together with the required perception abilities for interaction are introduced. Subsequently, motionplanning techniques for human environments, including the domains of biomechanically safe, risk-metric-based, human-aware planning are covered. Finally, the rather recent problem of interaction planning is summarized, including the issues of collaborative action planning, the definition of the interaction planning problem, and an introduction to robot reflexes and reactive control architecture for pHRI.

Justin: A humanoid upper body system for two-handed manipulation experiments

Author  Christoph Borst, Christian Ott, Thomas Wimböck, Bernhard Brunner, Franziska Zacharias, Berthold Bäuml

Video ID : 626

This video presents a humanoid two-arm system developed as a research platform for studying dexterous two-handed manipulation. The system is based on the modular DLR-Lightweight-Robot-III and the DLR-Hand-II. Two arms and hands are combined with a 3-DOF movable torso and a visual system to form a complete humanoid upper body. The diversity of the system is demonstrated by showing the mechanical design, several control concepts, the application of rapid prototyping and hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) development, as well as two-handed manipulation experiments and the integration of path planning capabilities.

Chapter 54 — Industrial Robotics

Martin Hägele, Klas Nilsson, J. Norberto Pires and Rainer Bischoff

Much of the technology that makes robots reliable, human friendly, and adaptable for numerous applications has emerged from manufacturers of industrial robots. With an estimated installation base in 2014 of about 1:5million units, some 171 000 new installations in that year and an annual turnover of the robotics industry estimated to be US$ 32 billion, industrial robots are by far the largest commercial application of robotics technology today.

The foundations for robot motion planning and control were initially developed with industrial applications in mind. These applications deserve special attention in order to understand the origin of robotics science and to appreciate the many unsolved problems that still prevent the wider use of robots in today’s agile manufacturing environments. In this chapter, we present a brief history and descriptions of typical industrial robotics applications and at the same time we address current critical state-of-the-art technological developments. We show how robots with differentmechanisms fit different applications and how applications are further enabled by latest technologies, often adopted from technological fields outside manufacturing automation.

We will first present a brief historical introduction to industrial robotics with a selection of contemporary application examples which at the same time refer to a critical key technology. Then, the basic principles that are used in industrial robotics and a review of programming methods will be presented. We will also introduce the topic of system integration particularly from a data integration point of view. The chapter will be closed with an outlook based on a presentation of some unsolved problems that currently inhibit wider use of industrial robots.

SMErobot - New parallel kinematic with unique concepts for demanding handling and process applications

Author  Martin Haegele

Video ID : 265

Video of demonstrator D1 of SMErobot - The European Robot Initiative for Strengthening the Competitiveness of SMEs in Manufacturing: "New Parallel Kinematic with unique concepts for demanding handling and process applications" SMErobot was an Integrated Project within the 6th Framework Programme of the EC to create a new family of SME-suitable robots and to exploit its potentials for competitive SME manufacturing (March 2005 - May 2009). For more details on the project and this new parallel kinematic, please also watch the "SMErobot video Coffee Break (English)" with Video ID: 261 as well as the "SMErobot Final Project Video" with Video ID: 262 or visit the respective demonstrator website: http://www.smerobot.org/04_demonstrations/#d1

Chapter 49 — Modeling and Control of Wheeled Mobile Robots

Claude Samson, Pascal Morin and Roland Lenain

This chaptermay be seen as a follow up to Chap. 24, devoted to the classification and modeling of basic wheeled mobile robot (WMR) structures, and a natural complement to Chap. 47, which surveys motion planning methods for WMRs. A typical output of these methods is a feasible (or admissible) reference state trajectory for a given mobile robot, and a question which then arises is how to make the physical mobile robot track this reference trajectory via the control of the actuators with which the vehicle is equipped. The object of the present chapter is to bring elements of the answer to this question based on simple and effective control strategies.

The chapter is organized as follows. Section 49.2 is devoted to the choice of controlmodels and the determination of modeling equations associated with the path-following control problem. In Sect. 49.3, the path following and trajectory stabilization problems are addressed in the simplest case when no requirement is made on the robot orientation (i. e., position control). In Sect. 49.4 the same problems are revisited for the control of both position and orientation. The previously mentionned sections consider an ideal robot satisfying the rolling-without-sliding assumption. In Sect. 49.5, we relax this assumption in order to take into account nonideal wheel-ground contact. This is especially important for field-robotics applications and the proposed results are validated through full scale experiments on natural terrain. Finally, a few complementary issues on the feedback control of mobile robots are briefly discussed in the concluding Sect. 49.6, with a list of commented references for further reading on WMRs motion control.

Mobile robot control in off-road conditions and under high dynamics

Author  Roland Lenain

Video ID : 435

This video illustrates the motion-control strategy detailed in Chap. 49, Springer Handbook of Robotics, 2nd edn (2016), when the ideal rolling-without-sliding conditions are not met. In the two segments, the robot follows a previously recorded trajectory, using RTK GPS. The first segment illustrates the capabilities on uneven ground at low speed, while the second shows results at high speed. Accuracy within a few centimeters is obtained thanks to adaptive and predictive approaches, whereas accuracy close to 1 m in the first case and 5 m for the second case are observed using the rolling-without-sliding assumption.