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Special Issue "Advanced Sensing and Control for Mobile Robotic Systems"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Physical Sensors".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 August 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Charlie Yang
Website
Guest Editor
University of the West of England, Bristol, United Kingdom
Interests: Human Robot Interaction; Intelligent System Design; Teleoperation System
Dr. Ning Wang
Website
Guest Editor
University of the West of England, Bristol, United Kingdom
Interests: Signal processing; Machine learning; Human–robot Interaction
Dr. Hang Su
Website
Guest Editor
Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Interests: Robotics, Bilateral Teleoperation; Deep Learning; Human-Robot Interaction; Medical Robotics
Dr. Yan Wu
Website
Guest Editor
Institute for Infocomm Research, A*STAR, Singapore
Interests: Service Robotics; Assistive Robotics; Human-Robot Interaction; Robot Learning
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Recent technological developments have led to the widespread use of mobile robot systems, in a large scope of applications in transportation, manufacturing, self-driving automobile, commercial and domestic services, surveillance and medical care, providing an emerging market with great potential. Researches on mobile robotics systems are multidisciplinary, covering control engineering, computer science, mechatronic engineering and bio-engineering, and including many technical aspects, such as perception, control, computer vision, artificial intelligence and sensor technologies. While existing technologies are developing rapidly, great challenges and issues in mobile robotic systems research still lie in the following areas: 1) mobility, 2) robust control of actuators, 3) navigation and mapping, 4) robust perception and 5) human-robot interaction. These may involve more technical aspects of sensor fusion, navigation, feature extraction, collision avoidance and so forth. To address these challenges, more advanced technologies in sensing and actuation are essential, which enable future mobile robots to operate effectively and autonomously in a greater range of real-world environments.

This special issue intends to provide a platform to gather the recent development of mobile robot systems and the associated research, and also to advance studies on the fundamental problems observed in mobile robots. We welcome state-of-the-art research papers on mobile robotic systems from a research perspective and an application perspective. Various multidisciplinary approaches or integrative contributions, including sensing, perception, motion control, navigation, learning and adaptation, fault tolerance, filtering, teleoperation, bio-inspired robots are also welcome to this Special Issue.

Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Motion control of mobile robot systems
  • Robot navigation, localization and mapping
  • Sensor fusion based control
  • Perception and decision-making of mobile robots
  • Computer vision and 3D sensing
  • Mobile robot teleoperation
  • Multiple mobile robot systems
  • Human-robot interaction for mobile robots
  • Automatic driving and assistant driving
  • Bio-inspired control of mobile robots
  • Learning and adaptation in mobile robots
  • Fault tolerance and filtering
Prof. Charlie Yang
Dr. Ning Wang
Dr. Hang Su
Dr. Yan Wu
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sensors is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • mobile robot systems
  • sensor fusion based control
  • navigation and mapping
  • computer vision
  • learning and adaptation
  • perception and decision-making

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
An Integrated Strategy for Autonomous Exploration of Spatial Processes in Unknown Environments
Sensors 2020, 20(13), 3663; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20133663 - 30 Jun 2020
Abstract
Exploration of spatial processes, such as radioactivity or temperature is a fundamental task in many robotic applications. In the literature, robotic exploration is mainly carried out for applications where the environment is a priori known. However, for most real life applications this assumption [...] Read more.
Exploration of spatial processes, such as radioactivity or temperature is a fundamental task in many robotic applications. In the literature, robotic exploration is mainly carried out for applications where the environment is a priori known. However, for most real life applications this assumption often does not hold, specifically for disaster scenarios. In this paper, we propose a novel integrated strategy that allows a robot to explore a spatial process of interest in an unknown environment. To this end, we build upon two major blocks. First, we propose the use of GP to model the spatial process of interest, and process entropy to drive the exploration. Second, we employ registration algorithms for robot mapping and localization, and frontier-based exploration to explore the environment. However, map and process exploration can be conflicting goals. Our integrated strategy fuses the two aforementioned blocks through a trade-off between process and map exploration. We carry out extensive evaluations of our algorithm in simulated environments with respect to different baselines and environment setups using simulated GP data as a process at hand. Additionally, we perform experimental verification with a mobile holonomic robot exploring a simulated process in an unknown labyrinth environment. Demonstrated results show that our integrated strategy outperforms both frontier-based and GP entropy-driven exploration strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Sensing and Control for Mobile Robotic Systems)
Open AccessArticle
Visual Saliency Detection for Over-Temperature Regions in 3D Space via Dual-Source Images
Sensors 2020, 20(12), 3414; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20123414 - 17 Jun 2020
Abstract
To allow mobile robots to visually observe the temperature of equipment in complex industrial environments and work on temperature anomalies in time, it is necessary to accurately find the coordinates of temperature anomalies and obtain information on the surrounding obstacles. This paper proposes [...] Read more.
To allow mobile robots to visually observe the temperature of equipment in complex industrial environments and work on temperature anomalies in time, it is necessary to accurately find the coordinates of temperature anomalies and obtain information on the surrounding obstacles. This paper proposes a visual saliency detection method for hypertemperature in three-dimensional space through dual-source images. The key novelty of this method is that it can achieve accurate salient object detection without relying on high-performance hardware equipment. First, the redundant point clouds are removed through adaptive sampling to reduce the computational memory. Second, the original images are merged with infrared images and the dense point clouds are surface-mapped to visually display the temperature of the reconstructed surface and use infrared imaging characteristics to detect the plane coordinates of temperature anomalies. Finally, transformation mapping is coordinated according to the pose relationship to obtain the spatial position. Experimental results show that this method not only displays the temperature of the device directly but also accurately obtains the spatial coordinates of the heat source without relying on a high-performance computing platform. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Sensing and Control for Mobile Robotic Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Local Bearing Estimation for a Swarm of Low-Cost Miniature Robots
Sensors 2020, 20(11), 3308; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20113308 - 10 Jun 2020
Abstract
Swarm robotics focuses on decentralised control of large numbers of simple robots with limited capabilities. Decentralised control in a swarm system requires a reliable communication link between the individuals that is able to provide linear and angular distances between the individuals—Range & [...] Read more.
Swarm robotics focuses on decentralised control of large numbers of simple robots with limited capabilities. Decentralised control in a swarm system requires a reliable communication link between the individuals that is able to provide linear and angular distances between the individuals—Range & Bearing. This study presents the development of an open-source, low-cost communication module which can be attached to miniature sized robots; e.g., Mona. In this study, we only focused on bearing estimation to mathematically model the bearings of neighbouring robots through systematic experiments using real robots. In addition, the model parameters were optimised using a genetic algorithm to provide a reliable and precise model that can be applied for all robots in a swarm. For further investigation and improvement of the system, an additional layer of optimisation on the hardware layout was implemented. The results from the optimisation suggested a new arrangement of the sensors with slight angular displacements on the developed board. The precision of bearing was significantly improved by optimising in both software level and re-arrangement of the sensors’ positions on the hardware layout. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Sensing and Control for Mobile Robotic Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
A Fuzzy Analytic Hierarchy Process and Cooperative Game Theory Combined Multiple Mobile Robot Navigation Algorithm
Sensors 2020, 20(10), 2827; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20102827 - 16 May 2020
Abstract
This study presents a multi-robot navigation strategy based on a multi-objective decision-making algorithm, the Fuzzy Analytic Hierarchy Process (FAHP). FAHP analytically selects an optimal position as a sub-goal among points on the sensing boundary of a mobile robot considering the following three objectives: [...] Read more.
This study presents a multi-robot navigation strategy based on a multi-objective decision-making algorithm, the Fuzzy Analytic Hierarchy Process (FAHP). FAHP analytically selects an optimal position as a sub-goal among points on the sensing boundary of a mobile robot considering the following three objectives: the travel distance to the target, collision safety with obstacles, and the rotation of the robot to face the target. Alternative solutions are evaluated by quantifying the relative importance of the objectives. As the FAHP algorithm is insufficient for multi-robot navigation, cooperative game theory is added to improve it. The performance of the proposed multi-robot navigation algorithm is tested with up to 12 mobile robots in several simulation conditions, altering factors such as the number of operating robots and the warehouse layout. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Sensing and Control for Mobile Robotic Systems)
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