An efficient method for collision detection and distance queries in a robotic bridge maintenance system

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Robotic Welding, Intelligence and Automation, 2007, 1, pp. 71 - 82
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When applying autonomous industrial robotic systems in an unknown/partially known or cluttered environment, mapping and representation of the environment as well as collision detection becomes crucial. Existing techniques in these areas are generally complex and computationally expensive to implement. In this paper an efficient sphere representation method is introduced for environment representation, collision detection and distance queries. In particular, this method is designed for the application in an autonomous bridge maintenance system. Simulation results show that this method is effective in environment representation and collision detection. Furthermore, the proposed method is also computationally efficient for real-time implementation.
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