Gas source localization in indoor environments using multiple inexpensive robots and stigmergy

Maurizio Di Rocco, Matteo Reggente, Alessandro Saffiotti
2011 2011 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems  
Environmental monitoring is a rather new field in robotics. One of the main appealing tasks is gas mapping, i.e., the characterization of the chemical properties (concentration, dispersion, etc.) of the air within an environment. Current approaches rely on a robot using standard localization and mapping techniques to fuse gas measures with spatial features. These approaches require sophisticated sensors and/or high computational resources. We propose a minimalistic approach, in which one or
more » ... in which one or multiple low-cost robots exploit the ability to store information in the environment, or "stigmergy", to effectively compute an artificial potential leading toward the likely location of the gas source, as indicated by a highest gas concentration or fluctuation. The potential is computed and stored directly on an array of RFID tags buried under the floor. Our approach has been validated in extensive experiments performed on real robots in a domestic environment.
doi:10.1109/iros.2011.6048334 fatcat:iutoclnr4bbz5gbty2fptk7jmu