Controlling the autonomy of a reconnaissance robot

Abstract : In this paper, we present our research on the control of a mobile robot for indoor reconnaissance missions. Based on previous work concerning our robot control architecture HARPIC, we have developed a man machine interface and software components that allow a human operator to control a robot at different levels of autonomy. This work aims at studying how a robot could be helpful in indoorreconnaissance and surveillance missions in hostile environment. Insuch missions, since a soldier faces many threats and must protect himself while looking around and holding his weapon, he cannot devote his attention to the teleoperation of the robot. Moreover, robots are not yet able to conduct complex missions in a fully autonomous mode. Thus, in a pragmatic way, we have built a software that allows dynamic swapping between control modes (manual, safeguarded and behavior-based) while automatically performing map building and localization of the robot. It also includes surveillance functions like movement detection and is designed formultirobot extensions. We first describe the design of our agent-based robot control architecture and discuss the various ways to control and interact with a robot. The main modules and functionalities implementing those ideas in our architecture aredetailed. More precisely, we show how we combine manual controls,obstacle avoidance, wall and corridor following, way point and planned travelling. Some experiments on a Pioneer robot equipped with various sensors are presented. Finally, we suggest some promising directions for the development of robots and user interfaces for hostile environment and discuss our planned future improvements.
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André Dalgalarrondo, Delphine Dufourd, David Filliat. Controlling the autonomy of a reconnaissance robot. SPIE Defense and Security 2004 Symposium. Unmanned Ground Vehicle Technology VI Conference, 2004, United States. pp.314, ⟨10.1117/12.547270⟩. ⟨hal-00655171⟩

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