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A Novel Warehouse Multi-Robot Automation System with Semi-Complete and Computationally Efficient Path Planning and Adaptive Genetic Task Allocation Algorithms

09/19/2018
by   Kam Fai Elvis Tsang, et al.
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We consider the problem of warehouse multi- robot automation system in discrete-time and discrete-space configuration with focus on the task allocation and conflict-free path planning. We present a system design where a centralized server handles the task allocation and each robot performs local path planning distributively. A genetic-based task allocation algorithm is firstly presented, with modification to enable heuristic learning. A semi-complete potential field based local path planning algorithm is then proposed, named the recur- sive excitation/relaxation artificial potential field (RERAPF). A mathematical proof is also presented to show the semi- completeness of the RERAPF algorithm. The main contribution of this paper is the modification of conventional artificial potential field (APF) to be semi-complete while computationally efficient, resolving the traditional issue of incompleteness. Sim- ulation results are also presented for performance evaluation of the proposed path planning algorithm and the overall system.

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