Robot-Supported Food Experiences

Category: Experience Design, Human-Robot Collaboration

Date: Spring/Summer, 2015

Publication: Laursen, C., Pedersen, S., Merritt, T., Caprani, C. Robot-Supported Food Experiences: Exploring Aesthetic Plating with Design Prototypes. (Full Paper) Presented at IEEE: RO-MAN 2015 in Kobe, Japan. Accepted for inclusion in LNAI Special Volume: Proceedings of RO-MAN 2015, Cultural Robotics. (2016)

Project Members: Christian Ø. Laursen


This project served as a preliminary study for my Master’s Thesis, in which the goal was to explore human-robot collaboration in the modern gastronomical kitchen. The project was done in collaboration with Aarhus School of Architecture as a way to test out and work with their newly acquired ABB IRB120 robots.

Robots are increasingly taking up roles in society to support and interact with humans in various contexts including the home, health-care, production and assembly lines, among others. Much of the research has been focused on efficiency, speed and accuracy of somewhat repetitive tasks. In addition, in most situations the robot simply replaces and performs the tasks originally performed by humans. Looking beyond the simple replacement of humans with robotic servants, the focus of this study was to increase creativity and pleasurable experiences supported by robots for the preparation, serving and consumption of food.

In order to investigate this domain, 9 exploratory design prototypes involving food preparation with an industrial robotic arm taking departure in themes of haute cousine, “plating”, and arts in order to show some of the capabilities of robots and to spark chefs imagination for possible future uses of robots in the kitchen.

The project resulted in a LNAI Springer publication on Cultural Robotics, and my project partner and I went to Kobe, Japan, to present our work on the IEEE RO-MAN conference on Robot and Human Interactive Communication.