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The fluid dynamics applied to mobile robot motion: the stream field method

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2 Author(s)
Keymeulen, D. ; Artificial Intelligence Lab., Vrije Univ., Brussels, Belgium ; Decuyper, J.

Mobile robots need a powerful and flexible navigation system in order to move around autonomously in an incompletely known and changing environment. In this paper we present a computational metaphor for path generation which is gleaned from fluid dynamics. It is powerful because it can find optimal paths in a maze of arbitrary complexity and it is flexible because it readily adapts to any change in the topology of the maze. We also show that by choosing appropriate boundary conditions, the fluid dynamics metaphor does not suffer from local minima. The paper further discusses the natural parallelism of the metaphor, its implementation on the DAP computer and examines some possible extensions by showing that additional constraints on the path, such as the maximal clearance, can be tackled using the fluid metaphor. Finally the topological properties of the path generated by the fluid dynamics metaphor are discussed using tools of topology

Published in:

Robotics and Automation, 1994. Proceedings., 1994 IEEE International Conference on

Date of Conference:

8-13 May 1994