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Titre : Human-robot collaboration: intuitive interaction and MATE systems

Conférencier : Prof. Valeria Villani

Résumé :
Since the last decade robots have been entering our lives more and more, being not any more simple (although reliable) tools, but real collaborators, assistants and workmates. While safety in robotics has always been a primary concern, this new trend has highlighted that to let robots permeate human environments they must be easy to interact with. Much focus has increasingly been put on the design of proper interaction means that cover the gap existing between humans and complex robotic systems. Building upon these lines, we have recently proposed a novel interaction approach for letting a human interact with a generic robot in a natural manner. The main idea is that of defining an interaction system that does not require neither any specific knowledge in robotics nor infrastructure or device, but that relies on commonly utilized objects while leaving the user’s hands free. The approach enjoys two main features: natural interaction and affect-based adaptation of robot’s behavior. By measuring user’s affect and cognitive workload, it is then possible to provide optimal assistive strategies to relief her/him when she/he is overwhelmed by the task. If necessary, additional teaching support can be provided, e.g., by virtual reality. We call this approach MATE: Measure, Adapt and TEach.

Bio :
Valeria Villani is Assistant Professor at the Department of Sciences and Methods for Engineering of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia since 2017. Her research interests focus on the design of human-centred user interfaces for efficient cooperation between the human and industrial machines or robots and biomedical signal processing for robot control and affective human-robot interaction. She received her B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Biomedical Engineering from the University Campus Bio-Medico of Rome in 2006 and 2009, respectively, and her Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University Campus Bio-Medico of Rome in 2013, focusing on biomedical signal processing, with emphasis on ECG signals. She was the recipient of the Best Paper Award at ISABEL 2011 and the Mortara Fellowship at CinC 2014. She has served as associate Editor for IEEE ICRA 2018 and 2019 and as Guest Editor for the Special Issue on Human-Robot Collaboration in Industrial Applications of Mechatronics (Elsevier) in 2018. She is also member of the Program Committee of IFAC HMS 2019 and co-organized the Workshop “WORKMATE 2018: the WORKplace is better with intelligent, collaborative, robot MATEs” at IEEE ICRA 2018.

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