Autonomous Robots

, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 149–164 | Cite as

Pre-collision safety strategies for human-robot interaction

Article

Abstract

Safe planning and control is essential to bringing human-robot interaction into common experience. This paper presents an integrated human−robot interaction strategy that ensures the safety of the human participant through a coordinated suite of safety strategies that are selected and implemented to anticipate and respond to varying time horizons for potential hazards and varying expected levels of interaction with the user. The proposed planning and control strategies are based on explicit measures of danger during interaction. The level of danger is estimated based on factors influencing the impact force during a human-robot collision, such as the effective robot inertia, the relative velocity and the distance between the robot and the human.

A second key requirement for improving safety is the ability of the robot to perceive its environment, and more specifically, human behavior and reaction to robot movements. This paper also proposes and demonstrates the use of human monitoring information based on vision and physiological sensors to further improve the safety of the human robot interaction. A methodology for integrating sensor-based information about the user's position and physiological reaction to the robot into medium and short-term safety strategies is presented. This methodology is verified through a series of experimental test cases where a human and an articulated robot respond to each other based on the human's physical and physiological behavior.

Keywords

Human-robot interaction Robot safety Affective state estimation Physiological signals 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  2. 2.University of British ColumbiaBritish ColumbiaCanada

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