Beyond Webcams: an introduction to online robots by Ken Goldberg

By Ken Goldberg

Remote-controlled robots have been first constructed within the Nineteen Forties to deal with radioactive fabrics. proficient specialists now use them to discover deep in sea and house, to defuse bombs, and to scrub up detrimental spills. this day robots should be managed through someone on the net. Such robots comprise cameras that not just let us glance, but in addition transcend Webcams: they allow us to manage the telerobots’ hobbies and activities. This e-book summarizes the state-of-the-art in web telerobots. It contains robots that navigate undersea, force on Mars, stopover at museums, go with the flow in blimps, deal with protein crystals, paint photographs, and carry human palms. The e-book describes eighteen platforms, displaying how they have been designed, how they functionality on-line, and the engineering demanding situations they meet.

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Given the luxury of a model of the remote environment, one could overlay that for the operator as well. Providing the operator with a virtual view that covered a wider field-of-view, and showed more detail than would be available from real camera imagery alone [12]. One of the problems of working remotely is the need for the operator to constantly map the desired end-effector motion into sequences of joint or Cartesian motions. A desired action “move a little to the left in this picture”, for example, could easily turn into several commands if the “left in this picture” happened not to conveniently lie along a predefined Cartesian or joint motion axis.

Smaller cameras may be mounted to the end-effector and aligned with the end-effector frame of reference. The best solution, and the one that gives complete freedom in camera placement, is to calibrate the remote cameras and perform the required transformation math. 5 Teleoperation via a Constrained Link Now, consider a communications scheme that imparts a several-second round-trip delay and limits the available bandwidth. One must be concerned with the effects of that constrained channel and perceptible delay.

Image data was sent from the camera back through a custom serial line to a video capture card. The camera image had a resolution of 192 by 165 pixels with 256 shades of gray, which were truncated to 64 shades to reduce transfer time. Exposure time could be changed by software to range between 64ms to 200ms. Although the robot was slowed to minimize dynamic effects, mechanical settling times were long enough to cause image blur at the camera. To avoid this, a stability check was implemented by taking two images separated by 64ms and differencing them.

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