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A distributed coverage algorithm for a team of robots based on a hexagonal formation is presented in this paper for complete coverage of free space. The main property of hexagonal formation is the high fault tolerance due to the overlap coverage of the three agents in each direction. Moreover, a coverage degree of 3 is also guaranteed for almost all points of the area. Another important feature of the proposed approach is that it does not require the absolute positions of the agents. The formed cluster is then considered as a single robot; hence, the coverage algorithm developed for a single robot can be extended to solve the resulting coverage problem. A common objective, especially in a deterministic node deployment, is to use a minimum number of nodes (sensors). In this approach, however, the maximum coverage is guaranteed for a fixed number of agents.
Date of Conference: 11-14 Oct. 2009