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  • 1.
    Albitar, Houssam
    et al.
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Dandan, Kinan
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Ananiev, Anani
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Kalaykov, Ivan
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Underwater Robotics: Surface Cleaning Technics, Adhesion and Locomotion Systems2016In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 13, article id 7Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Underwater robots are being developed for various applications ranging from inspection to maintenance and cleaning of submerged surfaces and constructions. These platforms should be able to travel on these surfaces. Furthermore, these platforms should adapt and reconfigure for underwater environment conditions and should be autonomous. Regarding the adhesion to the surface, they should produce a proper attaching force using a light-weight technics. Taking these facts into consideration, this paper presents a survey of different technologies used for underwater cleaning and the available underwater robotics solutions for the locomotion and the adhesion to surfaces.

  • 2.
    Dandan, Kinan
    et al.
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Albitar, Houssam
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Ananiev, Anani
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Kalaykov, Ivan
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Motion Control of Siro: The Silo Cleaning Robot2015In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 12, article id 184Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Both the principle of operation and the motion-control system of a suspended robot for surface cleaning in silos are presented in this paper. The mechanical design is a reasonable compromise between basically contradictory factors in the design: the small entrance and the large surface of the confined space, and the suspension and the stabilization of the robot. The design consists of three main parts: a support unit, the cleaning robot and a cleaning mechanism. The latter two parts enter the silo in a folded form and, thereafter, the robot’s arms are spread in order to achieve stability during the cleaning process. The vertical movement of the robot is achieved via sequential crawling motions.

    The control system is divided into two separate subsystems, the robot’s control subsystem and a support-unit control subsystem, in order to facilitate different operational modes. The robot has three principle motion-control tasks: positioning the robot inside the silo, holding a vertical position during the cleaning process and a crawling movement.

    A scaled prototype of the robot has been implemented and tested to prove the concept, in order to make certain that the mechanical design suits the main functions of the robotic system, to realize the robot’s design in an industrial version and to test it in a realistic environment.

  • 3.
    Haider, Usman
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Electronics, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Electronics. University Polytechnic Cartagena, Spain.
    Nyoman, Indrawibawa I.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Electronics, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Electronics. University Polytechnic Cartagena, Spain.
    Coronado, Juan Lopez
    University Polytechnic Cartagena, Spain.
    Kim, Chanki
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Electronics, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Electronics.
    Virk, Gurvinder S.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Electronics, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Electronics.
    User-centric Harmonized Control for Single Joint Assistive Exoskeletons2016In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 13, no 3, article id 115Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The world is ageing and this poses a challenge to produce cost-effective solutions that can keep elderly people independent and active by assisting them in daily living activities. In this regard, this paper presents a new control method to provide physical assistance for any of the user joints (e.g., hip, knee, elbow, etc.) as needed by the wearer, by means of an assistive non-medical single joint exoskeleton with a "harmonized controller" capable of providing assistance in a natural way, and varying the assistance as needed by the user performing some activity. The control method is aimed at exoskeletons to provide assistance to users facing difficulty in any activity such as walking, sit-to-stand, etc., and, other than providing assistance as needed, it can also reduce the muscular effort for a completely healthy user. Harmonized control uses exoskeleton-integrated force sensors and motion sensors to identify the user's intentions and the assistance level required, generating appropriate control signals for the actuators by implementing a simple PID controller. To verify the proposed harmonized-control technique, simulations using MATLAB/SIMULINK were performed for a single joint system. An experimental test rig for a single joint was also developed using MATLAB Xpc Target for real-time control. User tests were also carried out for the knee joint and the results obtained from simulations, experimentation and user tests are reported and discussed here. The results achieved to date and reported here show harmonized control to be a promising user-centric solution for the development of single joint assistive exoskeletons for support as needed by the user in daily living activities.

  • 4.
    Kereluk, Jason Alexander
    et al.
    Space Mechatronics Group, Institute for Aerospace Studies, University of Toronto.
    Emami, Reza
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    A New Modular, Autonomously Reconfigurable Manipulator Platform2015In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 12, article id 71Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper discusses the design and development of a new Modular, Autonomously Reconfigurable Serial manipulator platform for advanced manufacturing, termed as the MARS manipulator. The platform consists of i) an 18-Degree-of-Freedom (DOF) serial-link manipulator capable of locking any of its joints at any position in their continuous range, such that it can emulate fewer-DOF serial manipulators with different kinematic and dynamic parameters, and ii) an integrated simulation and design environment that provides control over the manipulator hardware as well as a toolset for the design, implementation and optimization of a desired manipulator configuration for a given task. The effectiveness of the MARS manipulator to adapt its configuration to various tasks is examined by assuming two well-known configurations, SCARA and articulated, and by performing a specific task with each of them. The variation in effectiveness of the two configurations in terms of the end-effector trajectory, end-effector accuracy and power consumption is discussed. Further, these configurations are optimized with respect to their performance accuracy, and compared to their pre-optimized versions. Finally, the accuracy model of the simulation is compared against the physical hardware system, running the same task.

  • 5.
    Khursheed, Khursheed
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Imran, Muhammad
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Ahmad, Naeem
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    O'Nils, Mattias
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Efficient Data Reduction Techniques for Remote Applications of a Wireless Visual Sensor Network2013In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 10, p. Art. no. 240-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A Wireless Visual Sensor Network (WVSN) is formed by deploying many Visual Sensor Nodes (VSNs) in the field. After acquiring an image of the area of interest, the VSN performs local processing on it and transmits the result using an embedded wireless transceiver. Wireless data transmission consumes a great deal of energy, where energy consumption is mainly dependent on the amount of information being transmitted. The image captured by the VSN contains a huge amount of data. For certain applications, segmentation can be performed on the captured images. The amount of information in the segmented images can be reduced by applying efficient bi-level image compression methods. In this way, the communication energy consumption of each of the VSNs can be reduced. However, the data reduction capability of bi-level image compression standards is fixed and is limited by the used compression algorithm. For applications attributing few changes in adjacent frames, change coding can be applied for further data reduction. Detecting and compressing only the Regions of Interest (ROIs) in the change frame is another possibility for further data reduction. In a communication system, where both the sender and the receiver know the employed compression standard, there is a possibility for further data reduction by not including the header information in the compressed bit stream of the sender. This paper summarizes different information reduction techniques such as image coding, change coding and ROI coding. The main contribution is the investigation of the combined effect of all these coding methods and their application to a few representative real life applications. This paper is intended to be a resource for researchers interested in techniques for information reduction in energy constrained embedded applications.

  • 6.
    Malik, Abdul Waheed
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design. COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Abbottabad, Pakistan.
    Thörnberg, Benny
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Anwar, Qaiser
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Johansen, Tor Arne
    Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway .
    Shahzad, Khurram
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Real Time Decoding of Color Symbol for Optical Positioning System2015In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 12, no 5Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper presents the design and real-time decoding of a color symbol that can be used as a reference marker for optical navigation. The designed symbol has a circular shape and is printed on paper using two distinct colors. This pair of colors is selected based on the highest achievable signal to noise ratio. The symbol is designed to carry eight bit information. Real time decoding of this symbol is performed using a heterogeneous combination of Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) and a microcontroller.  An image sensor having a resolution of 1600 by 1200 pixels is used to capture images of symbols in complex backgrounds. Dynamic image segmentation, component labeling and feature extraction was performed on the FPGA. The region of interest was further computed from the extracted features. Feature data belonging to the symbol was sent from the FPGA to the microcontroller. Image processing tasks are partitioned between the FPGA and microcontroller based on data intensity. Experiments were performed to verify the rotational independence of the symbols. The maximum distance between camera and symbol allowing for correct detection and decoding was analyzed. Experiments were also performed to analyze the number of generated image components and sub-pixel precision versus different light sources and intensities. The proposed hardware architecture can process up to 55 frames per second for accurate detection and decoding of symbols at two Megapixels resolution. The power consumption of the complete system is 342mw.

  • 7.
    Malik, Abdul Waheed
    et al.
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Thörnberg, Benny
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Palaniappan, Prasanna Kumar
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Comparison of Three Smart Camera Architectures for Real-time Machine Vision System2013In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 10, p. Art. no. 402-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper presents a machine vision system for real-time computation of distance and angle of a camera from a set of reference points located on a target board. Three different smart camera architectures were explored to compare performance parameters such as power consumption, frame speed and latency.  Architecture 1 consists of hardware machine vision modules modeled at Register Transfer (RT) level and a soft-core processor on a single FPGA chip. Architecture 2 is commercially available software based smart camera, Matrox Iris GT. Architecture 3 is a two-chip solution composed of hardware machine vision modules on FPGA and an external micro-controller. Results from a performance comparison show that Architecture 2 has higher latency and consumes much more power than Architecture 1 and 3. However, Architecture 2 benefits from an easy programming model. Smart camera system with FPGA and external microcontroller has lower latency and consumes less power as compared to single FPGA chip having hardware modules and soft-core processor.

  • 8.
    Persson, Andreas
    et al.
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Loutfi, Amy
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    Fast Matching of Binary Descriptors for Large-scale Applications in Robot Vision2016In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 13, article id 58Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The introduction of computationally efficient binary feature descriptors has raised new opportunities for real-world robot vision applications. However, brute force feature matching of binary descriptors is only practical for smaller datasets. In the literature, there has therefore been an increasing interest in representing and matching binary descriptors more efficiently. In this article, we follow this trend and present a method for efficiently and dynamically quantizing binary descriptors through a summarized frequency count into compact representations (called fsum) for improved feature matching of binary pointfeatures. With the motivation that real-world robot applications must adapt to a changing environment, we further present an overview of the field of algorithms, which concerns the efficient matching of binary descriptors and which are able to incorporate changes over time, such as clustered search trees and bag-of-features improved by vocabulary adaptation. The focus for this article is on evaluation, particularly large scale evaluation, compared to alternatives that exist within the field. Throughout this evaluation it is shown that the fsum approach is both efficient in terms of computational cost and memory requirements, while retaining adequate retrieval accuracy. It is further shown that the presented algorithm is equally suited to binary descriptors of arbitrary type and that the algorithm is therefore a valid option for several types of vision applications.

  • 9.
    Simoens, Pieter
    et al.
    IDLab, Ghent University – imec, Ghent, Belgium.
    Dragone, Mauro
    Research Institute of Signals, Sensors and Systems (ISSS), Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.
    Saffiotti, Alessandro
    Örebro University, School of Science and Technology.
    The Internet of Robotic Things: A review of concept, added value and applications2018In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 15, no 1, article id 1729881418759424Article, review/survey (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Internet of Robotic Things is an emerging vision that brings together pervasive sensors and objects with robotic and autonomous systems. This survey examines how the merger of robotic and Internet of Things technologies will advance the abilities of both the current Internet of Things and the current robotic systems, thus enabling the creation of new, potentially disruptive services. We discuss some of the new technological challenges created by this merger and conclude that a truly holistic view is needed but currently lacking.

  • 10.
    Singh Rupal, Baltej
    et al.
    Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada.
    Rafique, Sajid
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Electronics, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Electronics.
    Singla, Ashish
    Department of Mechanical Engineering, Thapar University, Patiala, India.
    Singla, Ekta
    Mechanical Engineering Department, Indian Institute of Technology, Ropar, India.
    Isaksson, Magnus
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Electronics, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Electronics.
    Singh Virk, Gurvinder
    Innovative Technology & Science Limited (InnoTecUK), Cambridge, UK.
    Lower-limb exoskeletons: Research trends and regulatory guidelines in medical and non-medical applications2017In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 14, no 6, p. 1-27Article, review/survey (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    With the recent progress in personal care robots, interest in wearable exoskeletons has been increasing due to the demand for assistive technologies generally and specifically to meet the concerns in the increasing ageing society. Despite this global trend, research focus has been on load augmentation for soldiers/workers, assisting trauma patients, paraplegics, spinal cord injured persons and for rehabilitation purposes. Barring the military-focused activities, most of the work to date has focused on medical applications. However, there is a need to shift attention towards the growing needs of elderly people, that is, by realizing assistive exoskeletons that can help them to stay independent and maintain a good quality of life. Therefore, the present article covers the rapidly evolving area of wearable exoskeletons in a holistic manner, for both medical and non-medical applications, so that relevant current developments and future issues can be addressed; this includes how the physical assistance/rehabilitation/compensation can be provided to supplement capabilities in a natural manner. Regulatory guidelines, important for realizing new markets for these emerging technologies, are also explored in this work. For these, emerging international safety requirements are presented for non-medical and medical exoskeleton applications, so that the central requirement of close human–robot interactions can be adequately addressed for the intended tasks to be carried out. An example case study on developing and commercializing wearable exoskeletons to help support living activities of healthy elderly persons is presented to highlight the main issues in non-medical mobility exoskeletons. This also paves the way for the potential future trends to use exoskeletons as physical assistant robots, as covered by the recently published safety standard ISO 13482, to help elderly people perform their activities of daily living.

  • 11.
    Solis, Jorge
    et al.
    Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Engineering and Physics. Waseda University.
    Ozawa, Kenichiro
    Waseda University, Japan.
    Takeuchi, Maasaki
    Waseda University, Japan.
    Kusano, Takafumi
    Waseda University, Japan.
    Ishikawa, Shimpei
    Waseda University, Japan.
    Petersen, Klaus
    Waseda University, Japan.
    Takanishi, Atsuo
    Waseda University, Japan.
    Biologically-inspired control architecture for musical performance robots2014In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 11, p. 172-, article id 11Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract At Waseda University, since 1990, the authors have been developing anthropomorphic musical performance robots as a means for understanding human control, introducing novel ways of interaction between musical partners and robots, and proposing applications for humanoid robots. In this paper, the design of a biologically-inspired control architecture for both an anthropomorphic flutist robot and a saxophone playing robot are described. As for the flutist robot, the authors have focused on implementing an auditory feedback system to improve the calibration procedure for the robot in order to play all the notes correctly during a performance. In particular, the proposed auditory feedback system is composed of three main modules: an Expressive Music Generator, a Feed Forward Air Pressure Control System and a Pitch Evaluation System. As for the saxophone-playing robot, a pressure-pitch controller (based on the feedback error learning) to improve the sound produced by the robot during a musical performance was proposed and implemented. In both cases studied, a set of experiments are described to verify the improvements achieved while considering biologically-inspired control approaches.

  • 12.
    Yousefi, Shahrouz
    et al.
    KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden.
    Li, Haibo
    KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden.
    3D Hand Gesture Analysis through a Real-time Gesture Search Engine2015In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 12, article id 67Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    3D gesture recognition and tracking are highly desired features of interaction design in future mobile and smart environments. Specifically, in virtual/augmented reality applications, intuitive interaction with the physical space seems unavoidable and 3D gestural interaction might be the most effective alternative for the current input facilities such as touchscreens. In this paper, we introduce a novel solution for real-time 3D gesture-based interaction by finding the best match from an extremely large gesture database. This database includes the images of various articulated hand gestures with the annotated 3D position/orientation parameters of the hand joints. Our unique matching algorithm is based on the hierarchical scoring of the low-level edge-orientation features between the query frames and database and retrieving the best match. Once the best match is found from the database in each moment, the pre-recorded 3D motion parameters can instantly be used for natural interaction. The proposed bare-hand interaction technology performs in real-time with high accuracy using an ordinary camera.

  • 13.
    Yousefi, Shahrouz
    et al.
    KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Media Technology and Interaction Design, MID.
    Li, Haibo
    KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Media Technology and Interaction Design, MID.
    3D Hand Gesture Analysis Through a Real-time Gesture Search Engine2015In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 12, article id 67Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    3D gesture recognition and tracking are highly desired features of interaction design in future mobile and smart environments. Specifically, in virtual/augmented reality applications, intuitive interaction with the physical space seems unavoidable and 3D gestural interaction might be the most effective alternative for the current input facilities such as touchscreens. In this paper, we introduce a novel solution for real-time 3D gesture-based interaction by finding the best match from an extremely large gesture database. This database includes images of various articulated hand gestures with the annotated 3D position/orientation parameters of the hand joints. Our unique matching algorithm is based on the hierarchical scoring of the low-level edge-orientation features between the query frames and database and retrieving the best match. Once the best match is found from the database in each moment, the pre-recorded 3D motion parameters can instantly be used for natural interaction. The proposed bare-hand interaction technology performs in real time with high accuracy using an ordinary camera.

  • 14. Zhao, Jiandong
    et al.
    Li, Zhaoxuan
    Zheng, Jun
    Shen, Tong
    KTH, School of Electrical Engineering (EES).
    Walking Stability Compensation Strategy of a Small Humanoid Robot Based on the Error of Swing Foot Height and Impact Force2013In: International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems, ISSN 1729-8806, E-ISSN 1729-8814, Vol. 10, p. 227-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In order to reduce the impact force of swing legs and improve walking stability when a small humanoid robot is walking, a set of impact dynamics equations based on the second kind Lagrange equation is produced, and an impact compensation control strategy with a BP network optimized by a particle swarm algorithm is designed. The core element of the compensation controller is replacing the error back propagation with a particle swarm algorithm. Due to the regulating joints of the knee, hip and ankle, the walking process is more stable than before. The experiment results show that when the left swing leg lands, the impact force drops by 2N and 1.5N respectively in the moments 4.5s and 10.5s. Therefore, the compensation strategy can reduce the impact force effectively and improve the walking stability.

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