Research Paper

Haptic Interaction for Human-Robot Communication Using a Spherical Robot


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We demonstrate a system of adding an additional human-robot communication channel using a spherical robot through kinesthetic haptic signals. While not designed for this type of interaction, we show that the robot could be used to generate kinesthetic haptic signals through asymmetric rotations. These rotations generate pseudo-rotations that are detectable in a user’s palm and can convey both rotational and directional information with proper training. We present two user studies that explore potential types of distinguishable haptic signals. While some participants were able to rapidly identify the different signals, other participants expressed the need for more training. We also describe use cases we believe would benefit from such interaction and general guidelines for spherical haptic devices.

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