Automotive Research Center
Automotive Research Center
A U.S. Army Center of Excellence for Modeling & Simulation of Ground Vehicles
Led by the University of Michigan

Evaluation and Performance Modeling of User Interfaces for UGVs

Despite recent advances in robot autonomy, human-in-the-loop interaction (including direct and advanced forms of teleoperation) remains an integral part of many mobile robot tasks. In situations where it is hazardous or difficult for humans to be present, but which require human judgment and decision-making skills, the use of a human teleoperator is the only option. However, most teleoperated tasks cannot be performed at a reasonable speed, not generally limited by actuator speeds, but by other bottlenecks.

Traditionally, UGVs are teleoperated with a joystick. A camera based on the UGV provides real-time video feedback to the operator. When there is no direct line-of-sight from the operator to the UGV, the operator can get disoriented and lose perspective, making teleoperation challenging. Prior research with either a mobile robot or a fixed manipulator has shown that adding augmented reality to the video feed can improve teleoperation performance. Our work thus far in this project has demonstrated through a preliminary set of user tests that this is also true for a mobile manipulator.

There are many different ways to present augmented reality views to the user, and many different modalities for the user to control both the UGV and the augmented video feed.To enhance situational awareness, we are also using a virtual reality view of the remote robot that can be manipulated to give a bird’s eye view of the robot, a close-up of the manipulator, or many other useful views. The goal of this project is to develop models that can be used to characterize and predict user performance under different teleoperation scenarios, with different input and output devices.




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Sponsored by U.S. Army CCDC Ground Vehicle Systems Center
Cooperative Agreement W56HZV-19-2-0001

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