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See detailA Real-Time Approach for Chance-Constrained Motion Planning with Dynamic Obstacles
Castillo Lopez, Manuel UL; Ludivig, Philippe; Sajadi-Alamdari, Seyed Amin et al

in IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (2020), 5(2), 3620-3625

Uncertain dynamic obstacles, such as pedestrians or vehicles, pose a major challenge for optimal robot navigation with safety guarantees. Previous work on motion planning has followed two main strategies ... [more ▼]

Uncertain dynamic obstacles, such as pedestrians or vehicles, pose a major challenge for optimal robot navigation with safety guarantees. Previous work on motion planning has followed two main strategies to provide a safe bound on an obstacle's space: a polyhedron, such as a cuboid, or a nonlinear differentiable surface, such as an ellipsoid. The former approach relies on disjunctive programming, which has a relatively high computational cost that grows exponentially with the number of obstacles. The latter approach needs to be linearized locally to find a tractable evaluation of the chance constraints, which dramatically reduces the remaining free space and leads to over-conservative trajectories or even unfeasibility. In this work, we present a hybrid approach that eludes the pitfalls of both strategies while maintaining the original safety guarantees. The key idea consists in obtaining a safe differentiable approximation for the disjunctive chance constraints bounding the obstacles. The resulting nonlinear optimization problem is free of chance constraint linearization and disjunctive programming, and therefore, it can be efficiently solved to meet fast real-time requirements with multiple obstacles. We validate our approach through mathematical proof, simulation and real experiments with an aerial robot using nonlinear model predictive control to avoid pedestrians. [less ▲]

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