Extending the Path-Planning Horizon

Bart Nabbe and Martial Hebert
The International Journal of Robotics Research, October, 2007, pp. 997 - 1024.

  • Adobe portable document format (pdf) (3MB)
Copyright notice: This material is presented to ensure timely dissemination of scholarly and technical work. Copyright and all rights therein are retained by authors or by other copyright holders. All persons copying this information are expected to adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. These works may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.

The mobility sensors on a typical mobile robot vehicle have limited range. Therefore a navigation system has no knowledge about the world beyond this sensing horizon. As a result, path planners that rely only on this knowledge to compute paths are unable to anticipate obstacles sufficiently early and have no choice but to resort to an inefficient local obstacle avoidance behavior.

To alleviate this problem, we present an opportunistic navigation and view planning strategy that incorporates look-ahead sensing of possible obstacle configurations. This planning strategy is based on a "what-if" analysis of hypothetical future configurations of the environment. Candidate sensing positions are evaluated based on their ability to observe anticipated obstacles. These sensing positions identified by this forward-simulation framework are used by the planner as intermediate waypoints. The validity of the strategy is supported by results from simulations as well as field experiments with a real robotic platform. These results show that significant reduction in path length can be achieved by using this framework.

Associated Center(s) / Consortia: Vision and Autonomous Systems Center
Number of pages: 28

Text Reference
Bart Nabbe and Martial Hebert, "Extending the Path-Planning Horizon," The International Journal of Robotics Research, October, 2007, pp. 997 - 1024.

BibTeX Reference
   author = "Bart Nabbe and Martial Hebert",
   title = "Extending the Path-Planning Horizon",
   booktitle = "The International Journal of Robotics Research",
   pages = "997 - 1024",
   month = "October",
   year = "2007",
   volume = "26",
   number = "10",