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Title 3D Formation Control in Multi-Robot Teams Using Artificial Potential Fields
Publication Date
Degree MS
Discipline/Department Engineering
Degree Level thesis
University/Publisher U of Denver
Abstract Multi-robot teams find applications in emergency response, search and rescue operations, convoy support and many more. Teams of autonomous aerial vehicles can also be used to protect a cargo of airplanes by surrounding them in some geometric shape. This research develops a control algorithm to attract UAVs to one or a set of bounded geometric shapes while avoiding collisions, re-configuring in the event of departure or addition of UAVs and maneuvering in mission space while retaining the configuration. Using potential field theory, weighted vector fields are described to attract UAVs to a desired formation. In order to achieve this, three vector fields are defined: one attracts UAVs located outside the formation towards bounded geometric shape; one pushes them away from the center towards the desired region and the third controls collision avoidance and dispersion of UAVs within the formation. The result is a control algorithm that is theoretically justified and verified using MATLAB which generates velocity vectors to attract UAVs to a loose formation and maneuver in the mission space while remaining in formation. This approach efficiently scales to different team sizes.
Subjects/Keywords Multi-robot; Potential fields; Teams; Unmanned aerial vehicles; Computer Engineering; Engineering; Robotics
Contributors Matthew J. Rutherford, Ph.D.; Kimon P. Valavanis, Ph.D.
Language en
Country of Publication us
Record ID oai:digitalcommons.du.edu:etd-2604
Repository denver
Date Retrieved
Date Indexed 2020-03-20
Created Date 2019-01-01 08:00:00

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…equipped with a dedicated suite of on-board sensors performs assigned tasks, which, cumulatively accomplish the assigned mission. Multi-robot teams may be deployed for a wide range of applications like search and rescue [49] [50] […

…review where the most relevant background information on the behavior, formation control topology and formation control strategies in multi-robot teams are discussed. 3 Chapter 3 describes the control algorithm used for formation control and provides a…

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…control in multi-robot teams has been extensively studied and three main formation control strategies have been identified: (i) leader-follower and graph theory based (ii) behavior-based and potential fields and (iii) virtual…

…List of Figures 2.1 2.2 2.3 Examples of single-robot systems: (a) iRobot Roomba Discovery (b) NASA Personal Satellite Assistant [60] (c) Liquid Robotics Wave Glider [59] . . Multi-agent unmanned…

…development focus on robotics has witnessed a shift to multi-robot systems since the late 1980’s. A major objective has been to tackle problems requiring spatio-temporal task scheduling and execution. In such scenarios, each robot in a multirobot team…

…formation control problem along with collision avoidance. In this thesis, the formation control problem is tackled in terms of developing a control algorithm for a multi-robot (or multi-agent) team where each robot/agent interacts with each other…