Towards an improved intuitive interface for Remotely Operated Vehicles
Journal of Ocean Engineering and Science
School of Engineering
© 2020 Currently joysticks are used for ROVs’ interface, though they prove to be tedious and there have been cases of severe damage to the vehicle and subsea architecture due to operator fatigue and attention loss. There is anecdotal evidence to suggest that the ease of manoeuvring with a more intuitive interface design would minimise these damage risks and psychological pressures related to operation. In this study we explored options for a more intuitive physical modality of ROV's interface. Specifically, we modelled alternative controllers and their operating functions in a 3D environment to provide insight on how they could be used. Three possible conceptual ideas were then proposed, which include the joystick with gesture controllers, the steering wheel with the trackball and the steering wheel with gesture controllers. To further strengthen the ideas presented within this paper and reduce the likelihood of authors’ bias, industry experts were consulted, and a formal survey targeting ROV pilots was conducted. To establish the most superior design, a trade-off analysis was conducted by developing a weighted ranking system based on the supporting and opposing arguments and the design's intuitiveness, with human psychology being used as another means of justification.
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