Intuitive Robot Programming

INTROP: Vision of an intuitively programmable robot for handcraft applications
INTROP: Vision of an intuitively programmable robot for handcraft applications

Project definition

Robot manipulators have several advantages, such as strength, speed, endurance, accuracy, and reproducibility. Up to date, these advantages could not be harnessed for a variety of potential applications. The new applications are - in addition to the classical field of production - particularly in the areas of service, entertainment and household. There, the applications are characterized by relatively few repetitions of the task execution and by a changing work environment. Therefore, the robot will only be used reasonably if the current effort for setting-up is significantly reduced and if the execution is supported by environment perception. The setup cost is mainly influenced by time-consuming and costly programming of the robot, which for many potential applications is still too expensive (even for experts). In addition, the programming required for sensor-based task executions is particularly high.

The aim of the project INTROP is the investigation of new, intuitive programming concepts that enable users without prior programming knowledge to program sensor-based robot manipulators for their applications quickly and easily. The user shall give the robot intuitively "the hand" and lead him through the desired task. He may also activate the robots tool (e.g. a gripper) or activate environmental sensors (e.g. a camera). Here not only simple tasks are regarded, consisting of a sequence of actions, but also complex tasks with situational variations and repetitions of executions. Compared to previous approaches, the focus here is on intuitively programming imperative control structures (e.g. commands, conditionals, and repetitions) and on intuitively programming declarative behaviours (such as moving, dodging, searching, and sorting). At the most, one task demonstration should be sufficient, which may subsequently be corrected as required by the user, and requires no additional hardware.

Areas of expertise

  • Classification of sensor-supported tasks
  • Independent optimisation of sensor-supported robot programmes using standard sensors
  • Encapsulation of the process into an intuitive programming paradigm


  • Sensor-supported robot programmes for industrial applications
  • Manipulation of flexible and alternating objects
  • Automatic adaptation to dynamic work environments



Student Jobs / Open Positions