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Talk-17: Autonomous Surface Vehicle Deployment with Inter- and Intra-Team Coordination from High-level Specifications (IITCHS)

James Usevitch, Kevin Leahy, Zachary Serlin, MIT Lincoln Laboratory

Platforms operating autonomously require a wide range of capabilities, robustness to unexpected disturbances, and resilience to partial failures. Having these attributes in a single exquisite platform significantly increases design and verification costs. An alternative approach is to deploy a heterogeneous swarm of simpler platforms that can collaborate to generate equal or greater functionality. Deploying such a swarm, however, poses novel challenges in planning and control that span from high level representation of team goals, to low level control and monitoring of individual platforms and sub-teams for failure or obstruction. These challenges stem from a lack of interchangeability between platforms, a dependence on preconceptions of environmental conditions prior to deployment, and large computational requirements. In this talk, we present an approach to solving the above challenges with a collection of algorithms we call Scalable Heterogenous Autonomy for Resilient Coordination (SHARC). The SHARC approach is derived from the field of Formal Methods. We present our approach, as well as experimental results using a team of autonomous surface vehicles deployed on the Charles River using MOOS-IvP.


  • Mission Planning