Internet Based Bilateral Teleoperation
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In conventional bilateral teleoperation, transmission delay over the Internet can potentially cause instability. The wave variable algorithm guarantees stability under varying transmission delay at the cost of poor transient performance. Adding a predictor on the master side can reduce this undesirable side-effect, but that would require a slave model. An inaccurate slave model used in the predictor as well as variations in transmission delay, both of which are likely under realistic situations, can result in steady state errors. A direct drift control algorithm is used to drive this error to zero regardless of the source of error. A semi-adaptive predictor that can distinguish between free space and rigid contact environment is used to provide more accurate force feedback on the master side. A full adaptive predictor is also used that estimates the slave environment parameters using recursive least squares with a forgetting factor. This research presents the experimental results and evaluations of the wave variable based methods under a realistic operation environment using a real master and slave. The effectiveness of this algorithm is fully evaluated using human subjects with no previous experience in haptics. Three algorithms are tested using PHANTOM brand haptic devices as master and slave: conventional bilateral teleoperation with no transmission delay as control, wave variable teleoperation with approximately 200 ms transmission delay one way, and wave variables with adaptive predictor and direct drift control with approximately 200 ms transmission delay one way. For each algorithm the human subjects are asked to perform three simple tasks: use the master to force the slave to track a reference trajectory in free space with the least amount of error, identify a contour surface on the slave side as accurately as possible using only haptic information from the master, and navigate a simple maze on the slave side in the least amount of time using haptic information from the master.