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Benchmarking human-robot collaborative assembly tasks

Laura DuarteMiguel NevesPedro Neto
Feb 2024
Manufacturing assembly tasks can vary in complexity and level of automation. Yet, achieving full automation can be challenging and inefficient, particularly due to the complexity of certain assembly operations. Human-robot collaborative work, leveraging the strengths of human labor alongside the capabilities of robots, can be a solution for enhancing efficiency. This paper introduces the CT benchmark, a benchmark and model set designed to facilitate the testing and evaluation of human-robot collaborative assembly scenarios. It was designed to compare manual and automatic processes using metrics such as the assembly time and human workload. The components of the model set can be assembled through the most common assembly tasks, each with varying levels of difficulty. The CT benchmark was designed with a focus on its applicability in human-robot collaborative environments, with the aim of ensuring the reproducibility and replicability of experiments. Experiments were carried out to assess assembly performance in three different setups (manual, automatic and collaborative), measuring metrics related to the assembly time and the workload on human operators. The results suggest that the collaborative approach takes longer than the fully manual assembly, with an increase of 70.8%. However, users reported a lower overall workload, as well as reduced mental demand, physical demand, and effort according to the NASA-TLX questionnaire.
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