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I n July 1997, as part of NASA's Mars Pathfinder mission, the Sojourner rover became the first spacecraft to autonomously drive on another planet. The twin Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) vehicles landed in January 2004, and after four years Spirit had driven more than four miles and Opportunity more than seven miles—lasting well past their projected(More)
This paper presents an approach for slip prediction from a distance for wheeled ground robots using visual information as input. Large amounts of slippage which can occur on certain surfaces, such as sandy slopes, will negatively affect rover mobility. Therefore, obtaining information about slip before entering such terrain can be very useful for better(More)
A system that enables continuous slip compensation for a Mars rover has been designed, implemented , and field-tested. This system is composed of several components that allow the rover to accurately and continuously follow a designated path, compensate for slippage, and reach intended goals in high-slip environments. These components include: visual(More)
We propose a method for learning using a set of feature representations which retrieve different amounts of information at different costs. The goal is to create a more efficient terrain classification algorithm which can be used in real-time, onboard an autonomous vehicle. Instead of building a monolithic classifier with uniformly complex representation(More)
— In this paper we predict the amount of slip an exploration rover would experience using stereo imagery by learning from previous examples of traversing similar terrain. To do that, the information of terrain appearance and geometry regarding some location is correlated to the slip measured by the rover while this location is being traversed. This(More)
— This paper considers prediction of slip from a distance for wheeled ground robots using visual information as input. Large amounts of slippage which can occur on certain surfaces, such as sandy slopes, will negatively affect rover mobility. Therefore, obtaining information about slip before entering a particular terrain can be very useful for better(More)
— In this paper, we present an algorithm for autonomous stair climbing with a tracked vehicle. The proposed method achieves robust performance under real-world conditions , without assuming prior knowledge of the stair geometry, the dynamics of the vehicle's interaction with the stair surface, or lighting conditions. Our approach relies on fast and accurate(More)
Tracked mobile robots in the 20 kg size class are under development for applications in urban reconnaissance. For efficient deployment, it is desirable for teams of robots to be able to automatically execute path following behaviors, with one or more followers tracking the path taken by a leader. The key challenges to enabling such a capability are (1) to(More)
Small, tracked mobile robots designed for general urban mobility have been developed for the purpose of reconnaissance and/or search and rescue missions in buildings and cities. Autonomous stair climbing is a significant capability required for many of these missions. In this paper we present the design and implementation of a new set of estimation and(More)