Efficient complete coverage of a known arbitrary environment with applications to aerial operations

Anqi Xu, Chatavut Viriyasuthee, Ioannis Rekleitis
Autonomous Robots
[59 citations]


Abstract: The problem of coverage of known space arises in a multitude of domains, including search and rescue, mapping, and surveillance. In many of these applications, it is desirable or even necessary for the solution to guarantee both the complete coverage of the free space, as well as the efficiency of the generated trajectory in terms of distance traveled. A novel algorithm is introduced, based on the boustrophedon cellular decomposition technique, for computing an efficient complete coverage path for a known environment populated with arbitrary obstacles. This hierarchical approach first partitions the space to be covered into non-overlapping cells, then solves the Chinese postman problem to compute an Eulerian circuit traversing through these cells, and finally concatenates per-cell seed spreader motion patterns into a complete coverage path. Practical considerations of the coverage system are also explored for operations with a non-holonomic aerial vehicle. The effects of various system parameters are evaluated in controlled environments using a high-fidelity flight simulator, in addition to over 200 km of in-field flight sessions with a fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle.



  author       = {Anqi Xu and Chatavut Viriyasuthee and Ioannis Rekleitis},
  title        = {Efficient complete coverage of a known arbitrary
		 environment with applications to aerial operations},
  journal      = {Autonomous Robots},
  year	       = {2014},
  issn	       = {0929-5593},
  volume       = {36},
  number       = {4},
  doi	       = {10.1007/s10514-013-9364-x},
  publisher    = {Springer US},
  keywords     = {Path planning; Coverage; Unmanned aerial vehicles},
  pages        = {365-381},
  language     = {English}

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