On-Board Human-Aware Navigation for Indoor Resource-Constrained Robots: A Case-Study with the Ranger
Introducing simple robotic platforms into domes- tic environments is faced with the challenge of social accept- ability. Therefore human-aware navigation is a must for robots operating in environments shared with human users. In this work, we focus on the human-aware navigation problem in a structured environment for a robot with limited sensing and constrained maneuvering called Ranger. The Ranger is a simple domestic robotic platform designed for interacting with children. The system combines person detection and tracking —which is the result of fusing laser-scan and depth-image based detectors provided by an RGB-D camera—, basic autonomous navigation and the concept of personal space. We rely only on the on-board sensors for mapping, localization, human tracking, and navigation. Systematic experiments are carried out with a real robot in the presence of a human in order to compare our human-aware navigation with a non human-aware simple approach. The results show that human-aware navigation is able to achieve trajectories which are respecting the personal spaces of the human and are thus more acceptable for the users.