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Redundancy Control of a Humanoid Head for Foveation and Three-Dimensional Object Tracking: A Virtual Mechanism Approach

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This paper presents a novel approach for object tracking with a humanoid robot head. The proposed approach is based on the concept of a virtual mechanism, where the real head is enhanced with a virtual link that connects the eye with a point in three-dimensional space. We tested our implementation on a humanoid head with 7 d.o.f. and two rigidly connected cameras in each eye (wide-angle and telescopic). The experimental results show that the proposed control algorithm can be used to maintain the view of an observed object in the foveal (telescopic) image using information from the peripheral view. Unlike other methods proposed in the literature, our approach indicates how to exploit the redundancy of the robot head. The proposed technique is systematic and can be easily implemented on different types of active humanoid heads. The results show good tracking performance regardless of the distance between the object and the head. Moreover, the uncertainties in the kinematic model of the head do not affect the performance of the system.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Jozef Stefan Institute, Jamova cesta 39, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia 2: Jozef Stefan Institute, Jamova cesta 39, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia; ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories, 2-2-2 Hikaridai, Seika-cho, Sokaro-gun, Kyoto 619-0288, Japan

Publication date: 2010-11-01

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