A Multirobot System in an Assisted Home Environment to Support the Elderly in Their Daily Lives [Online]
Number 22
First page 3690
Last page

The increasing isolation of the elderly both in their own homes and in care homes has made the problem of caring for elderly people who live alone an urgent priority. This article presents a proposed design for a heterogeneous multirobot system consisting of (i) a small mobile robot to monitor the well-being of elderly people who live alone and suggest activities to keep them positive and active and (ii) a domestic mobile manipulating robot that helps to perform household tasks. The entire system is integrated in an automated home environment (AAL), which also includes a set of low-cost automation sensors, a medical monitoring bracelet and an Android application to propose emotional coaching activities to the person who lives alone. The heterogeneous system uses ROS, IoT technologies, such as Node-RED, and the Home Assistant Platform. Both platforms with the home automation system have been tested over a long period of time and integrated in a real test environment, with good results. The semantic segmentation of the navigation and planning environment in the mobile manipulator for navigation and movement in the manipulation area facilitated the tasks of the later planners. Results about the interactions of users with the applications are presented and the use of artificial intelligence to predict mood is discussed. The experiments support the conclusion that the assistance robot correctly proposes activities, such as calling a relative, exercising, etc., during the day, according to the user’s detected emotional state, making this is an innovative proposal aimed at empowering the elderly so that they can be autonomous in their homes and have a good quality of life.