Technical Reports (CIS)

Document Type

Technical Report

Date of this Version

December 1993


University of Pennsylvania Department of Computer and Information Science Technical Report No. MS-CIS-93-98.


The problem of algorithmic motion planning is one that has received considerable attention in recent years. The automatic planning of motion for a mobile object moving amongst obstacles is a fundamentally important problem with numerous applications in computer graphics and robotics. Numerous approximate techniques (AI-based, heuristics-based, potential field methods, for example) for motion planning have long been in existence, and have resulted in the design of experimental systems that work reasonably well under various special conditions [7, 29, 30]. Our interest in this problem, however, is in the use of algorithmic techniques for motion planning, with provable worst case performance guarantees. The study of algorithmic motion planning has been spurred by recent research that has established the mathematical depth of motion planning. Classical geometry, algebra, algebraic geometry and combinatorics are some of the fields of mathematics that have been used to prove various results that have provided better insight into the issues involved in motion planning [49]. In particular, the design and analysis of geometric algorithms has proved to be very useful for numerous important special cases. In the remainder of this proposal we will substitute the more precise term of "algorithmic motion planning" by just "motion planning".



Date Posted: 16 July 2007