Publications / 2017 Proceedings of the 34rd ISARC, Taipei, Taiwan

Immersive Virtual Environment as a Promising Tool for the Elderly-Friendly Assistive Robot Design

Jeonghwan Kim, Seung Hyun Cha and Choongwan Koo
Pages 582-587 (2017 Proceedings of the 34rd ISARC, Taipei, Taiwan, ISBN 978-80-263-1371-7, ISSN 2413-5844)

As the population of older people continues to rapidly grow worldwide, assistive robots for older people are become more important to maintain their social, physical and psychological well-being. Although the idea of having these robots is an enticing prospect, there are many barriers for older people to adopt the robots in a daily life such as a negative attitude toward a robot, inadequate robot design, confined living environment. Therefore, the in-depth understanding of such barriers prior to adopting the robots is required so as to boost intimate interaction with and acceptance of assistive robot technology. This study thus aims to suggest a guideline that helps understand such barriers with a focus on relationships among the three aspects, namely human, robot, and environment. It then proposes Immersive Virtual Environment (IVE) as a tool to evaluate various scenarios of Human-Robot Interaction (HRI), so that it will help find optimal design solutions for assistive robots in consideration of the relationships among the three aspects. This research has great potential to contribute to the design principles of the assistive robots as well as space and environment planning for assistive housing.

Keywords: Assistive robot, Healthy aging, Immersive virtual environment, HRI