Concept illustration of an astronaut wearing an MIT BioSuit with an embedded JPL BioSleeve, to enable natural and efficient gesture control of robotic assistants.
For future missions with human-robot teams, the NASA Space Technology Roadmap highlights challenges in Human-Robot Interfaces for dexterous telerobotic control, gesture control of robotic assistants, and telesupervision. To address these challenges, JPL Robotics is developing a sleeve-based gesture recognition interface that can be worn in IVA and EVA suits. The JPL BioSleeve incorporates electromyography and inertial sensors to provide intuitive force and position control signals from natural arm, hand, and finger movements. The goals of this task are to construct a wearable BioSleeve prototype, embed algorithms for adaptive gesture recognition, and demonstrate control of a variety of robots including surface rovers, manipulator arms, and exoskeletons. The final demonstration will simulate and assess gestural driving of the ISS Canadarm2 by an astronaut on EVA who is anchored to the arm’s end effector for station-keeping.
This work is in collaboration with the Man-Vehicle Lab at MIT.