Surveillance Coverage Using Multiple Robots

Autonomous robots (aerial, ground, surface or underwater) can perform a variety of missions with a different level of autonomy. The problem of deploying a team of robots to perform surveillance coverage missions over an unknown terrain of complex and non-convex morphology is crucial in real missions involving autonomous devices. In such a mission, the robots attempt to maximize the part of the terrain that is visible while keeping the distance between each point in the terrain and the closest team member as small as possible. As the terrain’s morphology is unknown and it can be quite complex and non-convex, standard algorithms may not be applicable or often the implementation so that they can cope with real time scenarios is difficult. To overcome this, we adopted Cognitive-based Adaptive Optimization (CAO) approach initially introduced by Prof. E. Kosmatopoulos. A fundamental property of this approach is that it shares the same convergence characteristics as those of constrained gradient-descent algorithms (which require perfect knowledge of the terrain’s morphology and optimize surveillance coverage subject to the constraints the team has to satisfy).

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A CAO based algorithm for the case of aerial robots was developed and initially tested in simulation. The proposed approach was finally implemented using a team of real robots and its efficiency was validated in real scenarios.

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This work was performed in collaboration with  Prof. E. Kosmatopoulos (DUTH, Greece), Dr. A. Renzaglia (LAAS-CNRS, France),  Dr. A. Marinelli (INRIA, France) and Dr. S. Chatzicristophis (TEPAK, Cyprus)

Related Publications

  1. D. Scaramuzza, M.C. Achtelik, L. Doitsidis, F. Fraundorfer, E.B. Kosmatopoulos, A. Martinelli, M.W. Achtelik, M. Chli, S. A. Chatzichristofis, L. Kneip, D. Gurdan, L. Heng, G.H. Lee, S. Lynen, L. Meier, M. Pollefeys, A. Renzaglia, Roland Siegwart, J.C. Stumpf, P. Tanskanen, C. Troiani and S. Weiss, “Vision-Controlled Micro Flying Robots: from System Design to Autonomous Navigation and Mapping in GPS-denied Environments,” IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine, vol21, issue 3, pp. 26-40, September 2014. (Front Cover)
  2. L. Doitsidis, S. Weiss, A. Renzaglia, M. W. Achtelik, E. Kosmatopoulos, R. Siegwart, D. Scaramuzza, “Optimal Surveillance Coverage for Teams of Micro Aerial Vehicles in GPS-Denied Environments using Onboad Vision,” Autonomous Robots, vol. 33, no.1-2, pp. 173-188, 2012.
  3. A. Renzaglia, L. Doitsidis, A. Martinelli and E.B. Kosmatopoulos, “Multi-Robot 3D coverage of unknown areas,” International Journal of Robotics Research, Vol. 31, no.6, pp. 738-752, May 2012.
  4. A. Renzaglia, L. Doitsidis, S. A. Chatzichristofis, A. Martinelli and E. B. Kosmatopoulos, “Distributed multi-robot coverage using micro aerial vehicles,” in proceedings of the 21st Mediterranean Conference on Control and Automation, (MED’13), pp. 963-968, Platanias-Chania, Crete – Greece, June 25 – 28, 2013.
  5. M. Achtelik, M. Achtelik, Y. Brunet, M. Chli, S. A. Chatzichristofis, J.D. Decotignie, K.M. Doth, F. Fraundorfer, L. Kneip, D. Gurdan, L. Heng, E. Kosmatopoulos, L. Doitsidis, G.H. Lee, S. Lynen, A. Martinelli, L. Meier, M. Pollefeys, D. Piguet, A. Renzaglia, D. Scaramuzza, R. Siegwart, J. Stumpf, P. Tanskanen, C. Troiani and S. Weiss, “SFLY: Swarm of Micro Flying Robots,” in proceedings of the IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2012), Vilamura, Algarve, Portugal, October 7 – October 12, 2012. (Finalist for the best video award)
  6. A. Renzaglia, L. Doitsidis, A. Martinelli and E.B. Kosmatopoulos, “Multi-Robot 3D Coverage of Unknown Terrains,” in proceedings of the 50th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control and European Control Conference, pp. 2046-2051, 2011.
  7. L. Doitsidis, A. Renzaglia, S. Weiss, E. Kosmatopoulos, D. Scaramuzza, R. Siegwart, “3D Surveillance Coverage Using Maps Extracted by a Monocular SLAM Algorithm,” in proceedings of the 2011 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, pp. 1661-1667, San Francisco, USA, 2011.
  8. A. Renzaglia, L. Doitsidis, A. Martinelli and E.B. Kosmatopoulos, “Adaptive-based Control for Distributed Multi-Robot Coverage,” 2011 American Control Conference, pp. 468-473.
  9. A. Renzaglia, L. Doitsidis, A. Martinelli, E. Kosmatopoulos, “Cognitive-based Adaptive Control for Cooperative Multi-Robot Coverage,” in proceedings of the 2010 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, pp. 3314-3320, Taipei, Taiwan, 2010.
  10. A. Renzaglia, L. Doitsidis, A. Martinelli, E. Kosmatopoulos, “Adaptive-based, Scalable Design for Autonomous Multi-Robot Surveillance,” in proceedings of the 49th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control (CDC 2010), pp. 4618-4624, 2010.