Real-Time Path Planning for a Robot Arm in Changing Environments
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We present a practical strategy for real-time path planning for articulated robot arms in changing environments by integrating PRM for Changing Environments with 3D sensor data. Our implementation on Care-O-Bot 3 identifies bottlenecks in the algorithm and introduces new methods that solve the overall task of detecting obstacles and planning a path around them in under 100 ms. A fast planner is necessary to enable the robot to react to quickly changing human environments. We have tested our implementation in real-world experiments where a human subject enters the manipulation area, is detected and safely avoided by the robot. This capability is critical for future applications in automation and service robotics where humans will work closely with robots to jointly perform tasks.