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Blanche-an experiment in guidance and navigation of an autonomous robot vehicle

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1 Author(s)
I. J. Cox ; NEC Res. Inst., Princeton, NJ, USA

The principal components and capabilities of Blanche, an autonomous robot vehicle, are described. Blanche is designed for use in structured office or factory environments rather than unstructured natural environments, and it is assumed that an offline path planner provides the vehicle with a series of collision-free maneuvers, consisting of line and arc segments, to move the vehicle to a desired position. These segments are sent to a low-level trajectory generator and closed-loop motion control. The controller assumes accurate knowledge of the vehicle's position. Blanche's position estimation system consists of a priori map of its environment and a robust matching algorithm. The matching algorithm also estimates the precision of the corresponding match/correction that is then optimally (in a maximum-likelihood sense) combined with the current odometric position to provide an improved estimate of the vehicle's position. The system does not use passive or active beacons. Experimental results are reported

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation  (Volume:7 ,  Issue: 2 )