Failure Recovery with Shared Autonomy


Conference Paper


Building robots capable of long term autonomy has been a long standing goal of robotics research. Such systems must be capable of performing certain tasks with a high degree of robustness and repeatability. In the context of personal robotics, these tasks could range anywhere from retrieving items from a refrigerator, loading a dishwasher, to setting up a dinner table. Given the complexity of tasks there are a multitude of failure scenarios that the robot can encounter, irrespective of whether the environment is static or dynamic. For a robot to be successful in such situations, it would need to know how to recover from failures or when to ask a human for help. This paper, presents a novel shared autonomy behavioral executive to addresses these issues. We demonstrate how this executive combines generalized logic based recovery and human intervention to achieve continuous failure free operation. We tested the systems over 250 trials of two different use case experiments. Our current algorithm drastically reduced human intervention from 26% to 4% on the first experiment and 46% to 9% on the second experiment. This system provides a new dimension to robot autonomy, where robots can exhibit long term failure free operation with minimal human supervision. We also discuss how the system can be generalized.

Author(s): Sankaran, B. and Pitzer, B. and Osentoski, S.
Book Title: International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems
Year: 2012
Month: October

Department(s): Autonomous Motion
Bibtex Type: Conference Paper (inproceedings)
Paper Type: Conference

Digital: True
State: Published


  title = {Failure Recovery with Shared Autonomy},
  author = {Sankaran, B. and Pitzer, B. and Osentoski, S.},
  booktitle = {International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems},
  month = oct,
  year = {2012},
  url = {},
  month_numeric = {10}