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Path planning using a potential field representation

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2 Author(s)
Yong Hwang ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Illinois Univ., IL, USA ; Ahuja, N.

The findpath problem is the problem of moving an object to the desired position and orientation while avoiding obstacles. The authors present an approach to this problem using a potential-field representation of obstacles. A potential function similar to an electrostatic potential is assigned to each obstacle, and the topological structure of the free space is derived in the form of minimum potential valleys. A path specified by a subset of valley segments and associated object orientations, which minimizes a heuristic estimate of path length and the chance of collision, is selected as the initial guess of the solution. Then, the selected path as well as the orientation of the moving object along the path is modified to minimize a defined cost of the path. Findpath problems possessing three different levels of difficulty are identified. Path optimization is performed in up to three stages, according to the level of difficulty of the problem. These three stages are addressed by three separate algorithms which are automatically selected. The performance of the algorithms is illustrated

Published in:

Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition, 1989. Proceedings CVPR '89., IEEE Computer Society Conference on

Date of Conference:

4-8 Jun 1989