2023 Author: Bryan Walter | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 22:24
The American company 219 Design has created a prototype of a VR telecontrol system for the manipulator, which also allows programming the robot's actions. The development is reported by Motherboard.
Telecontrolled devices have been used for a long time and for various fields. The Da Vinci robotic surgeon, for example, is a tele-controlled manipulator, almost all operations of which during the operation are controlled by a person. In addition to medicine, tele-controlled devices are also used by the military - the first tests of the Soviet teletank began in the 30s of the XX century. The main problem of remotely controlled devices, as a rule, is that they use special controllers and controls, which cannot be effectively operated by an untrained person. In order to increase the accuracy and intuitiveness of telecontrol, complex systems can be created, including almost complete duplication of the robot itself - for example, a similar system of telecontrol on hydraulics was recently presented by developers from Disney Research.
The new VR environment for manipulator control developed by 219 Design allows the use of virtual reality glasses and a 3D model of the controlled device for telecontrol. In the demo video, the developers used the HTC Vive to control a working prototype of a small 3D printed manipulator. The operator works in a VR environment with an enlarged copy of the manipulator, simply "dragging" the robot arm to the desired position and controlling the grip, while the physical manipulator in the real world repeats all the movements of the virtual copy. This approach allows the system to be used even by a person who has no experience in telecontrol.
In addition to the telecontrol mode, 219 Design engineers also implemented a learning mode in which a person controls the movements of the robot, and the system records everything and can subsequently independently repeat the same actions without operator intervention. This allows you to quickly reconfigure the robot for a new task, while the operator may not have coding skills, and the use of a VR environment allows the reconfiguration procedure to be carried out remotely and without the physical presence of the manipulator itself.
Such intuitive learning systems are used by manufacturers of many modern industrial robots, this allows you to speed up the process of reconfiguring a robot on a production line. Also, the system of intuitive learning is supported by some consumer robots - for example, it was with the help of the learning mode that the Swedish inventor Simona Yetch created her “breakfast machine”.