A robotic boat is moving between two points when it encounters an obstacle
of unknown size. The boat must find a short path around the obstacle to resume
its original course. How should the boat move when it can only sense
the proximity of the obstacle, and does not have prior information
about the obstacle’s size? We study this problem for a robotic boat with
a forward-facing sonar. We study two versions of the problem. First, we solve a
simplified case when the obstacle is a rectangle of known orientation but unknown
dimensions. Second, we study a more general case where an arbitrarily shaped
obstacle is contained between two known parallel lines. We study the
performance of the algorithms analytically using competitive analysis and present
results from field experiments. The experimental setup is relevant for harbor
patrol or autonomous navigation in shallow water.
Plonski, Patrick A.; Vander Hook, Joshua; Peng, Cheng; Noori, Narges; Isler, Volkan.
Navigation Around an Unknown Obstacle for Autonomous Surface Vehicles Using a Forward-Facing Sonar.
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