Robotic arm simulates driving a Ferrari (w/ Video)

Aug 16, 2010 by Lisa Zyga weblog
In the CyberMotion Simulator, players can experience the quick and massive acceleration of driving a Ferrari. Credit: IEEE Spectrum.

Engineers have turned a robotic arm into a “Ferrari simulator,” enabling users to feel what it’s like to experience high-speed driving while controlling the car in a video game. As shown in the video below, players sit in the robotic arm positioned about two meters off the ground, and the arm twists and turns to simulate the car’s motion.

The device, called the CyberMotion , was created by Paolo Robuffo Giordano and colleagues at the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, in Tübingen, Germany, and recently presented at the ICRA 2010 conference. Their goal was to make the experience of driving a Ferarri F2007 as realistic as possible in order to better understand how humans experience the sensation of motion, which in turn could provide insight into the cognitive processes of the brain.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.
The robotic arm simulates the player's steering of the car in a video game.

The researchers also wanted to test the simulator in an environment that requires quick and massive acceleration. The CyberMotion Simulator has a delay of just 40 milliseconds, and allows players to be freely displaced in six degrees of freedom in space, including upside-down.

The is a Robocoaster that the researchers modified on a six-axis Kuka KR 500, which has the ability to lift up to 500 kg. The system is often used in amusement parks but normally does not allow users any control.

The researchers predict that the CyberMotion Simulator could be adapted to experiences in addition to car racing, such as controlling airplanes, helicopters, and ships, as well as for telepresence applications.

via: IEEE Spectrum

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User comments : 17

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_ilbud
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
I want to see a fat guy called Adrian driving it badly.

Yes, that's right, the Large Adrian Collider.
Bob_Kob
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
Is it really a simulator? Normally when driving on flat roads the car does not bank or tilt and such angles.
yOnsa
2.5 / 5 (2) Aug 16, 2010
those banks and tilts simulate the G's you would feel.
frajo
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
It cannot simulate monotone acceleration over a distance of 1000 m. A motorbike can give you the real feeling, however.
antialias_physorg
4 / 5 (2) Aug 16, 2010
It cannot simulate monotone acceleration over a distance of 1000 m.

Actually it can (as long as the acceleration is below 1g) - by tilting upwards.

For very short periods of time it could even simulate larger accelerations by additionally accelerating the player upwards (until the limit of the robot arm's extent is reached).
yOnsa
1 / 5 (1) Aug 16, 2010
even if it can not simulate actual monotone acceleration over a distance of 1000m, i believe that when your consciousness is focused on the screen while playing the game, your mind will fill in those gaps and produce a similar sensation.
Branden520
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
I want one. It's going on my list for when I win the lottery.
cmn
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
"Their goal was to make the experience of driving a Ferarri F2007 as realistic as possible in order to better understand how humans experience the sensation of motion, which in turn could provide insight into the cognitive processes of the brain."

Yeahhh... More like "Their goal is to play really cool video games all day on someone else's quarter."
HealingMindN
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
How does it simulate hairpin turns and spinouts? How does it simulate an ejection seat? How does it simulate a terminator? CAn you imagine terminators walking around w/arms like these? "You wanna ride, human? I'll give you a ride!"
trekgeek1
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
Awesome! I'll just buy the robot, computer,software and screen. How much? Oh, 200,000 dollars. I'll just buy a Ferrari.
frajo
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
A Ferrari will typically reach a velocity of 100 km/h within 3.6 seconds which amounts to an acceleration of 7.7 m/s**2. It needs 13 seconds to reach its top speed of 320 km/h.
I don't think the simulator can be tilting (which anyway is not a monotonous movement) and at the same time accelerating for 13 seconds.

But a Suzuki GSX-R 1100 which is in 2.4 seconds at 100 km/h has an acceleration of 11.6 m/s**2, is affordable, and gives you more thrust than the Ferrari.

Of course, this considerations are simplified assuming constant accelerations.
trekgeek1
not rated yet Aug 16, 2010
I don't think the simulator can be tilting (which anyway is not a monotonous movement) and at the same time accelerating for 13 seconds.


I'm not sure what your point is. Are you stating that you don't think the robot has the room to swing for 13 seconds without hitting an obstruction? Placing someone on their back will subject them to an acceleration of 9.8 m/s^2. That's how motion simulators simulate acceleration, they just tilt you back. Forgive me if I've terribly misinterpreted your statement.
frajo
not rated yet Aug 17, 2010
I don't think the simulator can be tilting (which anyway is not a monotonous movement) and at the same time accelerating for 13 seconds.
I'm not sure what your point is.
I'm criticising the IMHO inappropriate comparison of the simulator with a Ferrari. While some performance data of the simulator are comparable to Ferrari data the overall feeling definitely will not be comparable.
Are you stating that you don't think the robot has the room to swing for 13 seconds without hitting an obstruction? Placing someone on their back will subject them to an acceleration of 9.8 m/s^2. That's how motion simulators simulate acceleration, they just tilt you back. Forgive me if I've terribly misinterpreted your statement.
I deliberately used the word "monotonous". Velocity and acceleration are physical vectors. When the direction of a vector changes in time, it's not anymore describing a monotonous movement. 13 seconds acceleration along a straight line can't be simulated.
tflahive
not rated yet Aug 17, 2010
All that's needed is a wind simulator, like the indoor amusement park rides.
antialias_physorg
not rated yet Aug 17, 2010
A Ferrari will typically reach a velocity of 100 km/h within 3.6 seconds which amounts to an acceleration of 7.7 m/s**2. It needs 13 seconds to reach its top speed of 320 km/h.


7.7 m/s^2 is less than 9.8 m/s^2 - which is the _acceleration_ you would feel if the robot arm were to tilt you straight up and stay that way (something that is easily accomplished by such a robot). As such you'd could get the feeling of indefinitely accelerating at Ferrari speeds.

It doesn't need to perform a continuous motion. gravity is already an _acceleration_ (F = m*g where g is the gravitational constant). The only difference is that in a Ferrari you feel the acceleration while AND the same time your weight drag you towards the earth's center. If you sit in the above contraption tilted upwards you'd think you'd only feel the former but not the latter.
Mister_Sinister
not rated yet Aug 23, 2010
Is it just me or doesn't anyone think those graphics have PS1 quality? They are definitely not up to par with the effects of the physical simulation they are working to achieve.
frajo
not rated yet Aug 25, 2010
A Ferrari will typically reach a velocity of 100 km/h within 3.6 seconds which amounts to an acceleration of 7.7 m/s**2. It needs 13 seconds to reach its top speed of 320 km/h.


7.7 m/s^2 is less than 9.8 m/s^2 - which is the _acceleration_ you would feel if the robot arm were to tilt you straight up and stay that way (something that is easily accomplished by such a robot). As such you'd could get the feeling of indefinitely accelerating at Ferrari speeds.

It doesn't need to perform a continuous motion. gravity is already an _acceleration_ (F = m*g where g is the gravitational constant). The only difference is that in a Ferrari you feel the acceleration while AND the same time your weight drag you towards the earth's center. If you sit in the above contraption tilted upwards you'd think you'd only feel the former but not the latter.
Yes. That's why I can tell the difference between my bed and an accelerating Ferrari with closed eyes.