Augmented reality for robotics: A review

Zhanat Makhataeva, Huseyin Atakan Varol

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

127 Citations (Scopus)


Augmented reality (AR) is used to enhance the perception of the real world by integrating virtual objects to an image sequence acquired from various camera technologies. Numerous AR applications in robotics have been developed in recent years. The aim of this paper is to provide an overview of AR research in robotics during the five year period from 2015 to 2019. We classified these works in terms of application areas into four categories: (1) Medical robotics: Robot-Assisted surgery (RAS), prosthetics, rehabilitation, and training systems; (2) Motion planning and control: trajectory generation, robot programming, simulation, and manipulation; (3) Human-robot interaction (HRI): teleoperation, collaborative interfaces, wearable robots, haptic interfaces, brain-computer interfaces (BCIs), and gaming; (4) Multi-agent systems: use of visual feedback to remotely control drones, robot swarms, and robots with shared workspace. Recent developments in AR technology are discussed followed by the challenges met in AR due to issues of camera localization, environment mapping, and registration. We explore AR applications in terms of how AR was integrated and which improvements it introduced to corresponding fields of robotics. In addition, we summarize the major limitations of the presented applications in each category. Finally, we conclude our review with future directions of AR research in robotics. The survey covers over 100 research works published over the last five years.

Original languageEnglish
Article number21
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2020


  • Augmented reality
  • Human-robot interaction
  • Remote control
  • Robot assisted surgery
  • Robot programming
  • Robot swarms
  • Robotics
  • Teleoperation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Control and Optimization
  • Artificial Intelligence


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