A novel teleoperator testbed to understand the effects of master-slave dynamics on embodiment and kinesthetic perception *

Mohit Singhala, Jeremy D. Brown

With the rising popularity of telerobotic systems, the focus on transparency with regards to haptic perception is also increasing. Transparency, however, represents a theoretical ideal as most bilateral force-reflecting telerobots introduce dynamics (stiffness and damping) between the operator and the environment. To achieve true dexterity, it will be essential to understand how humans embody the dynamics of these telerobots and thereby distinguish them from the environment they are exploring. In this short manuscript, we introduce a novel single degree-of-freedom testbed designed to perform psychophysical and task performance assessments of kinesthetic perception during telerobotic exploration. The system is capable of being configured as a rigid mechanical teleoperator, a dynamic mechanical teleoperator, and an electromechanicaal teleoperator. We performed prefatory system identification and found that the system is capable of simulating telerobotic exploration necessary to understand the impact of master-slave dynamics on kinesthetic perception.

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