Unmanned ground vehicles formation control for a dynamic environment
The Unmanned Ground and Arial Vehicles (UGV, UAV) are the subjects and interests for different fields of science and technology. With the day to day advances in our automated dependant environment, the need for robotic independent vehicles is inevitable. The aim of this study is to apply stochastic optimization technique called Particle swarm optimization (PSO) for navigation, and controlling the formation of a swarm of robots. A second aim is to lay the foundations and clarify many of the issues using MobilRobot platform, mainly to contribute in the advancement of robotic research using the platform.
Robotics is considered an independent discipline comprise of many branches and challenges. This thesis explores the challenge of controlling the formation of a swarm of robots, in addition communicating with a UAV in support of localization and navigation in an unknown environment with dynamic obstacles. This research topic is initially motivated by the natural biological phenomenon of insects and animals that exhibit swarm behavior such as ants, bees, birds, and fishes. While the platform utilized in this research is not built from scratch, however it has its own challenges and learning hindrances. The study started by configuring the settings of a basic network implementation which includes understanding and perfecting the particular convention of C++ programming used in this platform. This study is also intended for overcoming many hurdles as a result of working with a built platform. These hurdles include and not limited to learning the software applications and simulation tools supplied by Mobile-Robots (the distributor of this robotic research platform). The hardware for this research included two P3AT, ten AmigoBots, and one UAV. The UAV is part of the future plans and advancements of this research. There are two main objectives in this thesis study, the first is employing PSO for navigation and the second objective is to lay down the foundations, documentations, and all necessary tutorials to aid future pioneers using the same platform and seeking to advance this research.