International Advanced Robotics Programme

Dependability of Robotics Systems

Modern robotics is addressing many new areas of application that require safe and effective physical and cognitive interaction with humans related to Autonomous Robot Dependability. The technical questions considered by this working group adress three main areas for Dependable Robots:

  • The first area is more concerned with mechanical design, compliant systems,  safe design, but also sensing control and monitoring while interacting with humans. This area is fairly well covered at this point, and many research groups and projects are actively working in it.
  • The second area deals with the software and system integration and encompasses error detection, diagnosis and recovery, V&V (verification and validation) techniques, testing, and controller synthesis. This area is also very active and can greatly learn from other domains dealing with integrated complex systems.
  • The third area relates to more advanced robotic concepts, related to decisional autonomy, network of robots and their high level interactions with human beings. This area is the least explored so far it yet offers paramount machine intelligence challenges. We think that the first area is now fairly well covered, and the second one has raised some interests in the robotics community as well as the software engineering one.

More generally, this working group considers the following research topics:

  • Theoretical foundations of robot dependability and resilience
  • Actuators and sensors for dependable robots
  • Algorithms for fault detection, identification, and recovery
  • Human factors for robotics & human-centered robot design
  • User friendly interfaces for robotic systems
  • Human-robot safe physical interaction
  • Dependable, autonomous and mixed-initiative, decision making
  • Case-studies on robot dependability in emerging application domains: industrial, service, space, biomedical, and personal robotics.
  • Robot acceptability, ethical and social implications of the introduction of Robotics in Human Environments



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