A variable speed force field method for multi-robot collaboration

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Conference Proceeding
IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, 2006, pp. 2697 - 2702
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A novel Force Field (F2) method with variable speed for multi-robot motion planning and collaboration is presented in this paper. The basic concept of the F2 method is to generate a force field for every robot based on and continuously changing according to its status including traveling speed, dimension, priority, location and environmental factor, etc. The interactions among robots' force fields and obstacles provide a natural way for collision avoidance and collaboration while robots are on their way to goals. Previous F2 method assumes that robots travel with constant speeds and can react instantly to the resultant force to change their orientations. Starting from a problematic situation brought out by this hypothesis, this paper remedies the F2 method by taking robots' dynamics and kinematics characteristics into consideration. In the Variable Speed Force Field method (VSF2), a robot can change its own speed according to environment information and its own status. Simulations in a real indoor environment were carried out and demonstrated the feasibility and effectiveness of this method. © 2006 IEEE.
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