Augmented Reality based Robot Control System for Customized Garment Production

Principal Investigator: Professor Norman C. TIEN (Chair Professor from Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering)

This project is showcased in the second exhibition – Digitization in Innovation Wing Two

About the scholar

Professor Norman C. TIEN

Research interests:
• MEMS technology
• Robotics
TransGP website:

Project information


  • Diversification of products to meet consumer demand is a rising trend in the garment Industry
  • Manufacturers are always targeting lower cost, faster delivery and greater sustainability
  • Garment industry needs to embrace flexible automation and robotics to lower cost and to enhance human productivity
  • As it is too complex to achieve full automation in garment production, collaborative works between robots and humans will be foreseen

Technical Challenges

  • Robot and human co-workers need to predict the movements of each other to avoid interference and to better work collaboratively
  • Otherwise, robots may stop and idle frequently to ensure safety with the presence of mobile co-workers
  • It is difficult for robots without any pre-programming to adapt to new environments
  • Existing solution is not scalable to mass customization

Novelty of the Project

The project demonstrates the feasibility of deploying multi-robots by combining computer vision and robotic technologies.

Novel approaches

1. AR-based robot control user interface

  • Operator can give navigation commands to a mobile robot by drawing a virtual line with the AR environment
  • Operator can see the routes of the robot in real-time
  • Operator can re-route the path of the moving robot interactively
  • Even laypersons can program the robot

2. Intelligent path planning and solver for mobile robots

  • Robot can detect the fast-changing environment with sensors
  • Robot can plan its motions and avoid obstacles
  • Robot can respond instantly to ad-hoc commands
Project video
Project images
About the Centre

The project represents a part of the research programmes of the Centre for Transformative Garment Production (TransGP), which is jointly formed by HKU and Tohoku University, Japan to tackle real-world technical problems in the garment industry.

Enquiry / Feedback

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