New Research


2011/08/01

Exploring Humanoids to which Humans Feel Psychological Safety with

Comprehensive Understanding from Interdisciplinary Approach of Engineering and Psychology

Tatsuo Arai (Professor), Yasushi Mae (Associate Professor), Tomohito Takubo (Assistant Professor), O

   Humanoids are expected to be partners of humans in near future. Arai laboratory has performed research in clarifying the relationships between humans and robots with the aim of developing humanoids that can coexist with humans safely.
   The particular feature of humanoids is biped walking by own mechanical legs. In this matter, physical safety or energetic efficiency is important for safe coexistence with humans. Therefore, we have developed a safe emergency stop system or path-planning that needs less energy. In addition, we developed mechanisms for humanoids to gently push a wheelchair so that humans feel safe. This way, we have developed technologies to allow humanoids to be socially collaborative and safe.
   Humans\\\' psychological views towards humanoids should also be considered. Using social psychological theories or methods that explain interpersonal relationships, help to clarify what is psychological safety to humanoids, moreover, how we can evaluate them. We also conducted interaction experiments using several humanoids and nationwide surveys in order to establish safe relationships between humans and humanoids.
   We take an interdisciplinary approach of both engineering and psychology to clarify the mechanisms to develop safe relationships between humans and humanoids. Through these studies, we have investigated how humans and humanoids will be partners of each other in near future as interpersonal relationships gradually develop.


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