Graduation Year

2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.S.M.E.

Degree Granting Department

Mechanical Engineering

Major Professor

Kyle Reed

Co-Major Professor

Rasim Guldiken

Keywords

Center of Mass, Depth, Kinect, Skeleton, Visual Feedback

Abstract

Abstract

This project illustrates the use of the human's ability to balance according to his center of gravity as demonstrated in two applications. The center of gravity of a human is explained in detail in order to use it in controlling the Aldebaran NAO robot and in the robot-assisted balance training.

The first application explains how a humanoid robot can mimic a human's movements via a three dimensional depth sensor where the sensor analyzes the position of a user's limbs and how the robot can lift one foot and balance on the other by redistributing the its body mass when the user lifts his foot. The results showed that this algorithm enabled NAO to successfully mimic the users' arms, and was able to balance on one foot by repositioning its center of mass.

The second application investigates how individuals with stroke lean when undergoing robot-assisted balance training. In some instances, they can develop inappropriate leaning behaviors during the training. The Kinect sensor is used to assist in optimizing patients' results by integrating it with the training program. The results showed that the Kinect sensor can improve the efficiency of the process by giving users graphical information about their mass distribution and whether they are leaning correctly or not.

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