Haptic Interactions With Multi-Robot Swarms Using Manipulability

Tina Setter, Alex Fouraker, Hiroaki Kawashima, Magnus Egerstedt


This paper investigates how haptic interactions can be defined for enabling a single operator to
control and interact with a team of mobile robots. Since there is no unique or canonical mapping
from the swarm configuration to the forces experienced by the operator, a suitable mapping must
be developed. To this end, multi-agent manipulability is proposed as a potentially useful mapping,
whereby the forces experienced by the operator relate to how inputs, injected at precise locations in
the team, translate to swarm-level motions. Small forces correspond to directions in which it is easy
to move the swarm, while larger forces correspond to more costly directions. Initial experimental
results support the viability of the proposed, haptic, human-swarm interaction mapping, through a
user study where operators are tasked with driving a collection of robots through a series of way


Human-robot interaction, multi-agent robotics, haptic force feedback

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5898/JHRI.4.1.Setter


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