Abstract

Mobile manipulators that combine base mobility with the dexterity of an articulated manipulator have gained popularity in numerous application verticals ranging from manufacturing, infrastructure inspection to domestic-service applications. Deployments span a range of information- and physical-level interaction tasks with the operational environment, from inspection to tending and logistics-resupply to assembly. Flexible decision-support methodologies and frameworks are crucial for successful mobile manipulation in (semi-) autonomous and teleoperation contexts. However, given the enormous scope of the literature, we restrict our attention to decision-support frameworks specifically in the context of wheeled mobile manipulation. Any discussion of decision-support methodologies/frameworks is intimately tied to the underlying design architectures, planning-control frameworks, and the human-robot interactions. Design architectures offer the primordial cyber-physical substrate upon which deliberative (i.e., planning), reactive (i.e., control), and human-robot interaction-based decision making can exhibit intelligent behavior. These three aspects are inextricably interwoven into and influence all aspects of task performance and application deployments. Hence, we present a classification of wheeled mobile manipulation literature while accounting for the diversity as well as the intertwining of deployment tasks, application-arenas, and decision-making methodologies for mobile manipulation with an eye for future avenues for research.

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