Visionary telerobotics research project powered by Sensodrive

Whether they are autonomous or remote-controlled – until now, the use of industrial, household and care robots has mostly been limited to specific tasks. That's why researchers at the Chair of Intelligent Sensor-Actuator Systems (ISAS) at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) have made it their mission to drive forward the development of universally applicable robots for human-machine interaction – supported by Sensodrive's robotics expertise and innovative SensoJoint actuators.

Aim: Universal robots that can be controlled by an all-in-one manipulator.

The aim of the current research project is to enable the development of an 'all-in-one' haptic-kinaesthetic manipulator that can be used to transfer human movements to a robot sensitively, precisely and in real time, to control it remotely via teleoperation or to teach it movement sequences. For example, a human operator could take over a care robot to perform complex tasks and control it precisely via a haptic manipulator, even from far away.

This requires an all-in-one manipulator that can be used to perform any task ergonomically and in real time – with unlimited movement, dynamics and working space, as well as with the most realistic haptic force feedback possible.

Powered by Sensodrive: SensoJoints enable perfect haptic force feedback and kinaesthetics.

For the development of such an all-in-one manipulator, the ISAS scientists have developed an innovative, optimisation-based design method with which ideal segment lengths, drive sizes and gear ratios can be selected for defined manipulator kinematics.

The ready-to-install SensoJoint actuators from Sensodrive served as the basis for this method's development, as they offer the perfect conditions for the desired sensor-actuator configuration.

  1. Flexible configuration for any workspace
    With the plug-and-play complete drives available in 5 sizes and different gear ratios, robots can be configured 'in a modular system' able to reproduce the desired human motion range 1:1.

  2. High-precision force control for safe, sensitive use
    Thanks to their market-leading integrated torque measurement and torque control (Advanced Output Torque Control), SensoJoints offer highly precise force control and enable sensitive, safe execution of movement for all types of work.

  3. Perfect haptic-kinaesthetic feedback for operators
    SensoJoints offer outstanding force feedback characteristics for teleoperation. Feedback loops use sensors to convert each movement and resistance on the actuator into completely realistic haptic-kinaesthetic feedback for the remote operator. This person 'feels' the robot's movements in real time while operating the manipulator, and, thanks to this immersive feeling, can remotely control it as precisely and sensitively as if they were performing the movements themselves.

Forecast: We are closer than ever to a universally applicable sensitive robot

The research project, which started in 2022, is still ongoing – but the results are already extremely promising. Haptic-kinaesthetic all-in-one manipulators will soon become reality. And in combination with SensoJoints from Sensodrive, universally applicable robotics solutions for teleoperation can then be developed and produced quickly and efficiently.

SensoJoints technical data