Autonomy Artificial Intelligence Robotics (AAIR)

BLAST: Bandwidth and Latency-Scalable Teleoperation

by Chris L Baker; Parag Batavia


This paper describes an approach to aid the many military unmanned ground vehicles which are still teleoperated using a wireless Operator Control Unit (OCU). Our approach provides reliable control over long-distance, highly-latent, low-bandwidth communication links. The innovation in our approach allows refinement of the vehicle’s planned trajectory at any point in time along the path. Our approach uses hand-gestures to provide intuitive fast path editing options, avoiding traditional keyboard/mouse inputs which can be cumbersome for this application. Our local reactive planner is used for vehicle safeguarding. Using this approach, we have performed successful teleoperation nearly 1500 miles away over a cellular-based communications channel. We also discuss results from our user-tests which have evaluated our innovative controller approach with more traditional teleoperation over highly-latent communication links.