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Sensors 2014, 14(9), 16486-16507; doi:10.3390/s140916486

A Remote Lab for Experiments with a Team of Mobile Robots

Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell'Informazione e Scienze Matematiche, Università di Siena, Via Roma 56, Siena 53100, Italy
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Received: 16 May 2014 / Revised: 15 August 2014 / Accepted: 18 August 2014 / Published: 4 September 2014
(This article belongs to the Section Remote Sensors)
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Abstract

In this paper, a remote lab for experimenting with a team of mobile robots is presented. Robots are built with the LEGO Mindstorms technology and user-defined control laws can be directly coded in the Matlab programming language and validated on the real system. The lab is versatile enough to be used for both teaching and research purposes. Students can easily go through a number of predefined mobile robotics experiences without having to worry about robot hardware or low-level programming languages. More advanced experiments can also be carried out by uploading custom controllers. The capability to have full control of the vehicles, together with the possibility to define arbitrarily complex environments through the definition of virtual obstacles, makes the proposed facility well suited to quickly test and compare different control laws in a real-world scenario. Moreover, the user can simulate the presence of different types of exteroceptive sensors on board of the robots or a specific communication architecture among the agents, so that decentralized control strategies and motion coordination algorithms can be easily implemented and tested. A number of possible applications and real experiments are presented in order to illustrate the main features of the proposed mobile robotics remote lab. View Full-Text
Keywords: remote labs; control education; multi-robot systems; mobile robotics remote labs; control education; multi-robot systems; mobile robotics
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Casini, M.; Garulli, A.; Giannitrapani, A.; Vicino, A. A Remote Lab for Experiments with a Team of Mobile Robots. Sensors 2014, 14, 16486-16507.

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