Log In Sign Up

STEP: Stochastic Traversability Evaluation and Planning for Safe Off-road Navigation

by   David D. Fan, et al.

Although ground robotic autonomy has gained widespread usage in structured and controlled environments, autonomy in unknown and off-road terrain remains a difficult problem. Extreme, off-road, and unstructured environments such as undeveloped wilderness, caves, and rubble pose unique and challenging problems for autonomous navigation. To tackle these problems we propose an approach for assessing traversability and planning a safe, feasible, and fast trajectory in real-time. Our approach, which we name STEP (Stochastic Traversability Evaluation and Planning), relies on: 1) rapid uncertainty-aware mapping and traversability evaluation, 2) tail risk assessment using the Conditional Value-at-Risk (CVaR), and 3) efficient risk and constraint-aware kinodynamic motion planning using sequential quadratic programming-based (SQP) model predictive control (MPC). We analyze our method in simulation and validate its efficacy on wheeled and legged robotic platforms exploring extreme terrains including an underground lava tube.


page 1

page 4

page 9

page 10


Online Mapping and Motion Planning under Uncertainty for Safe Navigation in Unknown Environments

Safe autonomous navigation is an essential and challenging problem for r...

Learning Risk-aware Costmaps for Traversability in Challenging Environments

One of the main challenges in autonomous robotic exploration and navigat...

Learning-based Uncertainty-aware Navigation in 3D Off-Road Terrains

This paper presents a safe, efficient, and agile ground vehicle navigati...

Trajectory Optimization of Chance-Constrained Nonlinear Stochastic Systems for Motion Planning and Control

We present gPC-SCP: Generalized Polynomial Chaos-based Sequential Convex...

Risk-Sensitive Motion Planning using Entropic Value-at-Risk

We consider the problem of risk-sensitive motion planning in the presenc...

PUTN: A Plane-fitting based Uneven Terrain Navigation Framework

Autonomous navigation of ground robots has been widely used in indoor st...

Risk-Aware Off-Road Navigation via a Learned Speed Distribution Map

Motion planning in off-road environments requires reasoning about both t...