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Autonomous vision-based exploration and mapping using hybrid maps and Rao-Blackwellised particle filters

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2 Author(s)
Sim, R. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., British Columbia Univ., Vancouver, BC ; Little, J.J.

This paper addresses the problem of exploring and mapping an unknown environment using a robot equipped with a stereo vision sensor. The main contribution of our work is a fully automatic mapping system that operates without the use of active ranger sensors (such as laser or sonic transducers), can operate in real-time and can consistently produce accurate maps of large-scale environments. Our approach implements a Rao-Blackwellised particle filter (RBPF) to solve the simultaneous localization and mapping problem and uses efficient data structures for real-time data association, mapping, and spatial reasoning. We employ a hybrid map representation that infers 3D point landmarks from image features to achieve precise localization, coupled with occupancy grids for safe navigation. This paper describes our framework and implementation, and presents our exploration method, and experimental results illustrating the functionality of the system

Published in:

Intelligent Robots and Systems, 2006 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on

Date of Conference:

9-15 Oct. 2006