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How to use computer manikins and motion capture
2004 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This thesis is the result of a project that was performed at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, during the spring of 2004. A computer manikin is a computer model of a human body. Computer manikins are mainly used to evaluate the use of products and workplaces. There are different ways to manipulate a manikin. The most common way is to use keyboard and mouse, a method that could be complicated and time consuming. Other ways to manipulate the manikin is to use motion capture equipment, a system where the manikin is manipulated by sensors attached to the real human, or other Virtual Reality devices to record the motions. The purpose of this thesis is to develop and verify a method that describes how to use the motion capture system MotionStar, to manipulate the computer manikin Jack. This method is presented in an easily read manual. To find a method for the manual three problems that needed to be solved were identified: how to measure the anthropometry, how to place the sensors and how to fasten the sensors. Three sets of tests were conducted to find solutions to these problems. The method of each test evolved from findings in previous tests. The next step was to perform a series of verifying tests. At first we assured that our method could be used in real work applications. Three cases were developed to resemble different work situations from a car manufacturing company. These cases laid the foundation to a comparison study where we compared our motion capture method with the method using mouse and keyboard, used by simulation engineers at the car manufacturer. The methods were compared regarding how precise the results were and how fast they could be achieved. The second verifying test was conducted as a usability test where the manual was tested on one test subject. The result from the first verifying test show that there are advantages and disadvantages regarding time usage and precision with our motion capture method compared to the method used by the simulation engineers. Regarding to precision one advantage with using motion capture is that it is very easy and takes little time to make pictures of the manikin. This can be used to freeze more than one posture in a motion sequence. One disadvantage with our motion capture method is that the accuracy is not precise. This is due to environmental distortions and that the manikins do not take in account minor motions like finger movements, that is, unless Virtual Reality Gloves are used. The main advantage with the method used by the simulation engineers is that it visually seems to have a higher level of accuracy. Disadvantages with the method used by the simulation engineers are that the posture may be inaccurate since the user has to estimate how to perform the task, it is time consuming and only one picture of the critical end position is made. Regarding time usage when manipulating the manikin into static postures, it is difficult to say which method that is preferable, since no method took less time than the other. However, the motion capture method have one advantage concerning time usage since the time it takes to measure the human body and transfer this data to the computer can be left out the next time a test is made. In view of that, the motion capture method has potential to be much faster as long as the same test persons are used several times. In the comparing study only static images were created and compared. The actual advantage however with using motion capture is that not only critical end positions are looked upon but that motion capture can be used to view complete motion sequences. The result of the usability test showed that only a few adjustments had to be made in the manual to make it easy to read and understand. In the paper copy of this thesis a CD is attached. The content of this CD could not be published here, but can be found and downloaded on in the catalouge CD. Username and password to this site are guest and titanic.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Technology, ergonomi, motion capture, computer manikin
Keyword [sv]
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-57883ISRN: LTU-EX--04/278--SELocal ID: e80e6501-5832-4ea5-85c5-76eccc318f1bOAI: diva2:1031271
Subject / course
Student thesis, at least 30 credits
Educational program
Ergonomic Design & Production Engineering, master's level
Validerat; 20101217 (root)Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04Bibliographically approved

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