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Journal of Healthcare Engineering
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 8932938, 11 pages
Research Article

Hierarchical Shared Control of Cane-Type Walking-Aid Robot

1Beijing Key Laboratory of Rehabilitation Technical Aids for Old-Age Disability, The National Research Centre for Rehabilitation Technical Aids, Beijing 100176, China
2Key Laboratory of Ministry of Education for Image Processing and Intelligent Control, School of Automation, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China
3The 28th Research Institute of China Electronics Technology Group Corporation, Nanjing 210007, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Qingyang Yan

Received 5 January 2017; Revised 28 May 2017; Accepted 27 June 2017; Published 13 August 2017

Academic Editor: Chengzhi Hu

Copyright © 2017 Chunjing Tao et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A hierarchical shared-control method of the walking-aid robot for both human motion intention recognition and the obstacle emergency-avoidance method based on artificial potential field (APF) is proposed in this paper. The human motion intention is obtained from the interaction force measurements of the sensory system composed of 4 force-sensing registers (FSR) and a torque sensor. Meanwhile, a laser-range finder (LRF) forward is applied to detect the obstacles and try to guide the operator based on the repulsion force calculated by artificial potential field. An obstacle emergency-avoidance method which comprises different control strategies is also assumed according to the different states of obstacles or emergency cases. To ensure the user’s safety, the hierarchical shared-control method combines the intention recognition method with the obstacle emergency-avoidance method based on the distance between the walking-aid robot and the obstacles. At last, experiments validate the effectiveness of the proposed hierarchical shared-control method.