Swarm-Bots to the Rescue
We explore the problem of resource allocation in a system made up of autonomous agents that can either carry out tasks individually or, when necessary, cooperate by forming physical connections with each other. We consider a group transport scenario that involves transporting broken robots to a repair zone. Some broken robots can be transported by an individual ‘rescue’ robot, whereas other broken robots are heavier and therefore require the rescue robots to self-assemble into a larger and stronger composite entity. We present a distributed controller that solves this task while efficiently allocating resources. We conduct a series of real-world experiments to show that our system can i) transport separate broken robots in parallel, ii) trigger self-assembly into composite entities when necessary to overcome the physical limitations of individual agents, iii) efficiently allocate resources and iv) resolve deadlock situations.
Keywordsself-assembly task allocation swarm intelligence search and rescue cooperation group transport autonomous robots multi-robot systems swarm robotics
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Groß, R., Dorigo, M.: Group transport of an object to a target that only some group members sense. In: Yao, X., Burke, E.K., Lozano, J.A., Smith, J., Merelo-Guervós, J.J., Bullinaria, J.A., Rowe, J.E., Tiňo, P., Kabán, A., Schwefel, H.-P. (eds.) PPSN 2004. LNCS, vol. 3242, pp. 852–861. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 5.Kube, C.R., Zhang, H.: Stagnation recovery behaviours for collective robotics. In: Proc. of the 1994 IEEE/RSJ/GI Int. Conf. on Intell. Rob. and Sys., vol. 3, pp. 1883–1890. IEEE Computer Society Press, Los Alamitos (1994)Google Scholar
- 8.Pérez-Uribe, A., Floreano, D., Keller, L.: Effects of group composition and level of selection in the evolution of cooperation in artificial ants. In: Banzhaf, W., Ziegler, J., Christaller, T., Dittrich, P., Kim, J.T. (eds.) ECAL 2003. LNCS (LNAI), vol. 2801, pp. 128–137. Springer, Heidelberg (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar