Investigating Distancing and Communicative Flight Paths with small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles


In order to appropriately interact in public spaces, small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (sUAVs) will need to be able to approach people in safe, comfortable, and legible ways. This talk will focus on the distancing and communicative components of flight paths individually before considering the path forward to combine these investigations. Specific research questions that will be addressed are: 1) What is the appropriate distance for sUAV interaction, and how does this change based on the person, the vehicle, and the environment?, 2) How do naïve users interpret flight path changes and what similarities do they display when they create their own flight paths?, and 3) How can vehicle, environment, and robot application impact both the size and legibility of the flight paths? This discussion will be of interest to researchers and practitioners in field robotics and sUAV communities, as well as those in the fields of human factors, artificial intelligence, and the social sciences.