On the use of simulation in robotics: Opportunities, challenges, and suggestions for moving forward

Heesun Choi, Cindy A Crump, Christian Duriez, Asher Elmquist, Gregory Hager, David Han, Jeff Trinkle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The last five years marked a surge in interest for and use of smart robots, which operate in dynamic and unstructured environments and might interact with humans. We posit that well-validated computer simulation can provide a virtual proving ground that in many cases is instrumental in understanding safely, faster, at lower costs, and more thoroughly how the robots of the future should be designed and controlled for safe operation and improved performance. Against this backdrop, we discuss how simulation can help in robotics, barriers that currently prevent its broad adoption, and potential steps that can eliminate some of these barriers. The points and recommendations made concern the following simulation-in-robotics aspects: simulation of the dynamics of the robot; simulation of the virtual world; simulation of the sensing of this virtual world; simulation of the interaction between the human and the robot; and, in less depth, simulation of the communication between robots. This Per
Original languageEnglish
JournalPNAS
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 5 2021

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