Operating articulated objects based on experience
Kemp, Charles C.
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Many tasks that would be of benefit to users in domestic environments require that robots manipulate articulated objects such as doors and drawers. In this paper, we present a novel approach that simultaneously estimates the kinematic model of an articulated object based on the trajectory described by the robot's end effector, and uses this model to predict the future trajectory of the end effector. One advantage of our approach is that the robot can directly use these predictions to generate an equilibrium point control path for operating the mechanism. Additionally, our approach can improve these predictions based on previously learned articulation models. We have implemented and tested our approach on a real mobile manipulator. Through 40 trials, we show that the robot can reliably open various household objects, including cabinet doors, sliding doors, office drawers, and a dishwasher. Furthermore, we demonstrate that using the information from previous interactions as a prior significantly improves the prediction accuracy.