Lead Participant: ROBOT CARE SYSTEMS


To increase the number of elderly living independently and to improve their quality of life, in this tender we present a novel care robot capable to autonomously assist elderly in perfoming various daily living activities. In our design we aim to provide elderly with both physical as well as social support while keeping their privacy and personal space preserved. A large part of our research will also be devoted to investigating safety regulations and making our solution safe for both elderly and their property. Finally, we plan to adapt our solution to be applicable in case of elderly suffering from chronic diseases such as dementia or mobility problems. At the first stage of our design process, with our partner the Zuyd University of Applied Sciencies, who has a long experience in application of technology in healthcare, we performed a social study with independently living elderly where we defined functional and usability requirements for the care robot design.
Using our previous experience in personal robot design from the TU Delft Biorobotics Lab, we propose an affordable robot with limited complexity but able to support various household tasks. The robot will be equipped with set of sensors for information acquisition, a mobile base, body and an complex arm with an underactuated gripper able to grasp almost any object a human can also grasp, at various heights. To allow for easy personal transfer of elderly in their homes, the robot body will be extended with handles so that a robot can be transformed into an autonomous mobility device.
We propose a variety of software modules for the actions of the robot. These include collision avoidance, autonomous navigation, object manipulation, speech recognition, face recognition, object recognition as well as person tracking and action recogniton. Each individual module directly interacts with the low-level control layer. Also a high level planner that will autonomously plan the actions of the robot dependent of the user's behaviour will be provided. Special attention is given to the safety aspects of our solutions.
A very intuitive and easy to use interface for user-robot interaction is proposed. Both remote control as well as fully autonomous behaviour is provided and the user can control the robot either by manipulating it or through a tablet or a speech interface. Special attention is given also to elderly with hearing or / and visual problems.
We founded a startup Lerovis B.V. that, with the experience of our partner Lobeco B.V. in the area of hardware and 24/7 service solutions for fire, security and surveillance, will bring our care robot to a world-wide market, starting in Europe.

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