Patrick P. Neumann, Victor Hernandez Bennetts, Achim J. Lilienthal, Matthias Bartholmai
From Insects to Micro Air Vechiles - A Comparison of Reactive Plume Tracking Strategies
Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Intelligent Autonomous Systems. Padova, Italy, 15-19 July 2014, pp. 1-12.
Abstract: Insect behavior is a common source of inspiration for roboticists and computer scientists when designing gas-sensitive mobile robots. More specifically, tracking airborne odor plumes and localization of distant gas sources are abilities that suit practical applications such as leak localization and emission monitoring. Gas sensing with mobile robots has been mostly addressed with ground-based platforms and under simplified conditions and thus, there exist a significant gap between the outstanding insect abilities and state of the art robotics systems. As a step towards practical applications, we evaluated the performance of three biologically inspired plume tracking algorithms. The evaluation is carried out not only with computer simulations, but also with real-world experiments in which, a quadrocopter-based micro Unmanned Aerial Vehicle autonomously follows a methane trail towards the emitting source. Compared to ground robots, micro UAVs bring several advantages such as their superior steering capabilities and fewer mobility restrictions in complex terrains. The experimental evaluation shows that, under certain environmental conditions, insect like behavior in gas-sensitive UAVs is feasible in real world environments.
Keywords: autonomous micro UAV, mobile robot olfaction, gas source localization, reactive plume tracking, biologically inspired robots.
Paper: [PDF (981.2kB)]
  AUTHOR = {Neumann, Patrick P. and Hernandez Bennetts, Victor and Lilienthal, Achim J. and Bartholmai, Matthias},
  TITLE = {From Insects to Micro Air Vehicles - A Comparison of Reactive Plume Tracking Strategies},
  BOOKTITLE = {Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Intelligent Autonomous Systems},
  VOLUME = {},
  YEAR = {2014},
  DATE = {15-19 July},
  ADRESS = {Padova, Italy},
  PAGES = {1-14},
  DOI = {}