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C-22

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FlightBot: Towards Improving in-Flight Customer Experience Through The Use Of Robotics

Gilson Dos Santos, Akhil Koothal, Irvin Steve Cardenas, Michael Lovell, Christian Collier, and Jong-Hoon Kim Advanced Telerobotics Research Laboratory, Department of Computer Science Kent State University, Kent, Ohio, USA {gdossant, akootha}@kent.edu, irvin@irvincardenas.com, {mlovell, ccolli54, jkim72}@kent.edu

 

Abstract—Recent advances in robotics have affected various industries across the world, especially service areas. One of the most challenging areas is in-flight service, which has huge potential in terms of business as well as customer satisfaction. In this paper, we propose a novel robotic system, called the in-Flight Autonomous Customer Care System (iFACCS) that enhances a flight attendant’s duties and affords passengers with a more pleasant travel experience. The iFACCS allows passengers to request catering services as well as travel items through a customer application at their seat and flight attendants to deliver the requested services and items to the customers via a semi-autonomous robot, called FlightBot on-board the aircraft. We discuss the state of art of such service systems and their limitations, propose the architecture of the iFACCS, describe our preliminary work, and elaborate on the challenges faced during the development of our the robotic system.