Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Carlo Pinciroli, Advisor

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Michael A. Gennert, Committee Member

Co-advisor

Eugene Eberbach

Identifier

etd-052517-130653

Abstract

Simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) is a challenging and vital problem in robotics. It is important in tasks such as disaster response, deep-sea and cave exploration, in which robots must construct a map of an unknown terrain, and at the same time localize themselves within the map. The issue with single- robot SLAM is the relatively high rate of failure in a realistic application, as well as the time and energy cost. In this work, we propose a new approach to decentralized multi-robot SLAM which uses a robot swarm to map the environment. This system is capable of mapping an environment without human assistance and without the need for any additional infrastructure. We assume that 1) no robot possesses sufficient memory to store the entire map of the environment, 2) the communication range of the robots is limited, and 3)there is no infrastructure present in the environment to assist the robot in communicating with others. To cope with these limitations, the swarm system is designed to work as an independent entity. The swarm can deploy new robots towards the region that is yet to be explored, coordinate the communication between the robots by using itself as the communication network and replace any malfunctioning robots. The proposed method proves to be a reliable and robust exploration algorithm. It is shown to be a self-growing mapping network that is able to coordinate among numerous robots and replace any broken robots hence reducing the chance of system failure.

Publisher

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name

MS

Department

Robotics Engineering

Project Type

Thesis

Date Accepted

2017-05-25

Accessibility

Unrestricted

Subjects

Multi-robot systems, SLAM, Swarm intelligence, Swarm robotics

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