Emergence and Inhibition of Synchronization in Robot Swarms

  • Fernando Perez-DiazEmail author
  • Stefan M. Trenkwalder
  • Rüdiger Zillmer
  • Roderich Groß
Part of the Springer Proceedings in Advanced Robotics book series (SPAR, volume 6)


Synchronization can be a key requirement to perform coordinated actions or reach consensus in multi-robot systems. We study the effect of robot speed on the time required to achieve synchronization using pulse coupled oscillators. Each robot has an internal oscillator and the completion of oscillation cycles is signaled by means of short visual pulses. These can, in turn, be detected by other robots within their cone of vision. In this way, oscillators influence each other to attain temporal synchrony. We observe in simulation and in physical robotic experiments that synchronization can be fostered or inhibited by tuning the robot speed, leading to distinct dynamical regimes. In addition, we analyze the effect of the involved parameters on the time it takes for the system to synchronize.



S.M. Trenkwalder is recipient of a DOC Fellowship of the Austrian Academy of Sciences.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fernando Perez-Diaz
    • 1
    Email author
  • Stefan M. Trenkwalder
    • 2
  • Rüdiger Zillmer
    • 2
  • Roderich Groß
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceThe University of SheffieldSheffieldUK
  2. 2.Department of Automatic Control and Systems EngineeringThe University of SheffieldSheffieldUK

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