Omnidirectional Force Feedback for Assisted Navigation of Omnidirectional Co-Robots:

Elena Pradhan, MS Student

The objective of this research is to improve the ability of a human operator to drive an omnidirectional robot using haptic feedback in a quasi-static environment as well as in a dynamic environment. Omnidirectional robots have the potential to significantly improve the ability of a human operator to navigate in confined areas, but require more coordination in order to control the extra navigational degrees of freedom. We hypothesize that the omnidirectional force feedback provided to the driver through a joystick can assist the driver to navigate the robot in a natural and coordinated manner, while minimizing any sensations of discomfort and disorientation. Specifically, three objectives are proposed: 1) to characterize perceptible thresholds of omnidirectional force feedback using a 3-DOF force feedback joystick. 2) to evaluate the use of omnidirectional forceā€feedback for assisted navigation of omnidirectional co-robots in quasi-static environments, and 3) to experimentally evaluate the evaluate the use of omnidirectional force-feedback in dynamic environments.