University of Oulu

D. Ehlers, M. Suomalainen, J. Lundell and V. Kyrki, "Imitating Human Search Strategies for Assembly," 2019 International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Montreal, QC, Canada, 2019, pp. 7821-7827. doi: 10.1109/ICRA.2019.8793780

Imitating human search strategies for assembly

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Author: Ehlers, Dennis1; Suomalainen, Markku1,2; Lundell, Jens1;
Organizations: 1School of Electrical Engineering, Aalto University, Finland
2University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 3.3 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-08-19


We present a Learning from Demonstration method for teaching robots to perform search strategies imitated from humans in scenarios where alignment tasks fail due to position uncertainty. The method utilizes human demonstrations to learn both a state invariant dynamics model and an exploration distribution that captures the search area covered by the demonstrator. We present two alternative algorithms for computing a search trajectory from the exploration distribution, one based on sampling and another based on deterministic ergodic control. We augment the search trajectory with forces learnt through the dynamics model to enable searching both in force and position domains. An impedance controller with superposed forces is used for reproducing the learnt strategy. We experimentally evaluate the method on a KUKA LWR4+ performing a 2D peg-in-hole and a 3D electricity socket task. Results show that the proposed method can, with only few human demonstrations, learn to complete the search task.

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Series: IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
ISSN: 2152-4092
ISSN-E: 2379-9552
ISSN-L: 2152-4092
ISBN: 978-1-5386-6027-0
ISBN Print: 978-1-5386-8176-3
Pages: 7821 - 7827
DOI: 10.1109/ICRA.2019.8793780
Host publication: 2019 International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA). 20-24 May 2019, Montreal, Canada
Conference: International Conference on Robotics and Automation
Type of Publication: A4 Article in conference proceedings
Field of Science: 213 Electronic, automation and communications engineering, electronics
Funding: This work was supported by Academy of Finland, decision 286580 and 314180.
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