Cooperative Mapping and Exploration using Counter-rotational Potential Fields

David McIntyre, Wasif Naeem, Cheng Zhang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents a novel technique for mapping and exploration using cooperating autonomous underwater vehicles. Rather than using the typical lawnmower sweep pattern to search an entire area, the proposed navigational plan involves guiding the formation directly towards each object of interest in turn, before arriving at a final goal position. This is achieved by the use of traditional artificial potential fields alongside counter-rotational potential fields. These clockwise and counter-clockwise fields are employed simultaneously by vehicles to ensure that the entire object is scanned rather than simply avoided as is the case with traditional collision avoidance techniques. The proposed methodology allows a formation to have fluid-like motion whilst a separation distance between cooperating agents (free of angular constraints) is maintained with a greater degree of flexibility than traditional formation control approaches. Owing to its nature, this technique is suited for applications such as exploration, mapping and underwater inspection to name a few. Simulation results demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed approach.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication27th Irish Signals and Systems Conference
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5090-3409-3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016
Event27th Irish Signals and Systems Conference - Ulster University, Derry, United Kingdom
Duration: 21 Jun 201622 Jun 2016


Conference27th Irish Signals and Systems Conference
Abbreviated titleISSC2016
CountryUnited Kingdom
Internet address

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