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Distributed Robotics


Modular Robots Distributed Robotics Networked Robots Animals and Robots Sensor Networks Underwater Robotics 3D Navigation Desktop Robotics

Networks of Robots and Sensors for First Responders

The goal of this project is to advance networked multi-agent systems: control,
self-organization, adaptation, and perception. We are
developing algorithms that integrate communication in the control
loop of a robot system and explore the synergies between communication,
control, and perception to develop more capable systems. More
specifically, our research addresses:

Control for communication and sensing: The control of robotic
agents to maintain communication links or establish new ones, while obtaining
the required sensory information and tracking sources


Communication for sensing and perception: The fusion of
information from heterogeneous sensors over the network, providing
the required information for each agent to plan and control its
mobility and providing remotely located human rescue workers with
information through immersive displays


Communication networks for sensing and control: The grouping,
scheduling and routing of nodes to adapt to changing, adverse
conditions while maintaining guarantees for control of mobility and
for sensor fusion and integration.

We are especially interested in exploring these issues in the context
of providing support for first responders. Humans have been called upon to
function in progressively more complex and hostile environments
resulting, in many cases, in unnecessary loss of lives.
Today, the need to collect, collate and convey information
effectively in this environment exceeds the state of the art in
information technology. We envision a physical analog to the
Internet-- networks of computers that can actively sense, physically
interact with, and reason about the world. While the Internet allows
transparent access to information already online, this research will
extend the paradigm by adding a paradigm to google for physical information,
setting into motion robots and sensors that team together to acquire
information and act on it. Such a capability will make a huge difference
in environments that pose hazard for humans.

This project is a collaboration with Vijay Kumar (U. Penn) and
Sanjiv Singh (CMU), as well as part of an international collaboration
with peter Corke (CSIRO, ICT Centre, Brisbane)