Distributed Fault-Tolerant Robot Control Architecture Based on Organic Computing Principles
Walking animals like insects show a great repertoire of reactions and behaviours in interaction with their environment. Moreover, they are very adaptive to changes in their environment and to changes of their own body like injuries. Even after the loss of sensors like antennas or actuators like legs, insects show an amazing fault tolerance without any hint of great computational power or complex internal fault models. Our most complex robots in contrast lack the insect abilities although computational power is getting better and better. Understanding biological concepts and learning from nature could improve our approaches and help us to make our systems more “life-like” and therefore more fault tolerant. This article introduces a control architectural approach based on organic computing principles using concepts of decentralization and self-organization, which is demonstrated and tested on a six-legged robotic platform. Beside explaining the organic robot control architecture, this study presents a leg coordination architecture extension to improve the robustness and dependability towards structural body modifications like leg amputations and compares experimental results with previous studies.
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