Departmental Papers (MEAM)

Document Type

Journal Article

Subject Area


Date of this Version

October 2002


Copyright 2002 IEEE. Reprinted from IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation, Volume 18, Issue 5, October 2002, pages 813-825.
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We describe a framework for cooperative control of a group of nonholonomic mobile robots that allows us to build complex systems from simple controllers and estimators. The resultant modular approach is attractive because of the potential for reusability. Our approach to composition also guarantees stability and convergence in a wide range of tasks. There are two key features in our approach: 1) a paradigm for switching between simple decentralized controllers that allows for changes in formation; 2) the use of information from a single type of sensor, an omnidirectional camera, for all our controllers. We describe estimators that abstract the sensory information at different levels, enabling both decentralized and centralized cooperative control. Our results include numerical simulations and experiments using a testbed consisting of three nonholonomic robots.


Cooperative localization, formation control, hybrid control, nonholonomic mobile robots



Date Posted: 15 November 2004

This document has been peer reviewed.