Digital twins for collaborative robots: A case study in human-robot interaction

Ali Ahmad Malik*, Alexander Brem

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Human-robot collaboration (HRC) can expand the level of automation in areas that have conventionally been difficult to automate such as assembly. However, the need of adaptability and the dynamics of human presence are keeping the full potential of human-robot collaborative systems difficult to achieve. This paper explores the opportunities of using a digital twin to address the complexity of collaborative production systems through an industrial case and a demonstrator. A digital twin, as a virtual counterpart of a physical human-robot assembly system, is built as a ‘front-runner’ for validation and control throughout its design, build and operation. The forms of digital twins along system's life cycle, its building blocks and the potential advantages are presented and discussed. Recommendations for future research and practice in the use of digital twins in the field of cobotics are given.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102092
JournalRobotics and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier Ltd

Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Cobot
  • Collaborative robot
  • Digital twin, Demonstrator
  • Human-robot collaboration
  • Simulation


Dive into the research topics of 'Digital twins for collaborative robots: A case study in human-robot interaction'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this