PI: Dan Szafir
Abstract: While free-flying robots hold great promise in supporting NASA missions, we currently lack knowledge regarding how they can effectively be designed to collaborate with users and integrate into human environments, such as the ISS. Critical steps towards integrating these robots into human environments and collaborative teams include the development of formal HRI models for human-free-flyer communication and coordination, design methodologies for human-robot teams, contextual understandings of free-flyer tasks, and interfaces and interaction tools that support both proximal and distal user control. The goal of this research is to advance fundamental knowledge of human-robot interaction principles to enable deployments of distributed teams consisting of humans and free-flying robots in critical NASA missions. Addressing NASA ECF Topic 3 — Effective Human-Robot Interaction (HRI) for Space Exploration, this work will help realize the full potential of free-flying robots as collaborative partners supporting human activities across a variety of NASA work contexts by developing new methods for communicating robot status at a glance as well as scalable robot interface technologies that support both proximal and distal operation.