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Separation distance for robot motion control using superquadratic obstacle potentials

Badawy, Ahmed and McInnes, Colin (2006) Separation distance for robot motion control using superquadratic obstacle potentials. In: International Control Conference 2006, 2006-08-30 - 2006-09-01.

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Abstract

The minimum separation distance between two objects (manoeuvring object and obstacle) is crucial in the application of potential field algorithms to autonomous robot motion control. The distance calculation is essential in both goal potential and obstacle potential estimation. The minimum distance between a 3D point and a superquadric surface is computationally very expensive to obtain. Consequently, many alternative, approximate definitions were investigated as an alternative. In this paper, the separation distance between two manoeuvring 3D objects will be discussed. Unlike previous work, position, orientation, and body dimensions will be taken into consideration for the distance calculation. Accurate distance calculation helps in decreasing the obstacle potential strength and providing a larger available free workspace. Consequently, the more accurate distance calculation available, the less manoeuvring is required.