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Collective behavior based on self-organization has been shown in group-living animals from insects to vertebrates. These findings have stimulated engineers to investigate approaches for the coordination of autonomous multirobot systems based on self-organization. In this experimental study, we show collective decision-making by mixed groups of cockroaches(More)
The pheromone trail laying and trail following behaviors of ants have proved to be an efficient mechanism to optimize path selection in natural as well as in artificial networks. Despite this efficiency, this mechanism is under-used in collective robotics because of the chemical nature of pheromones. In this paper we present a new experimental setup which(More)
This paper presents a detailed characterization of the Hokuyo URG-04LX 2D laser range finder. While the sensor specifications only provide a rough estimation of the sensor accuracy, the present work analyzes issues such as time drift effects and dependencies on distance, target properties (color, brightness and material) as well as incidence angle. Since(More)
S u m m ar y. This paper describes a novel solution to a mobile climbing robot on magnetic wheels, designed for inspecting the interior surfaces in gas tanks made out of thin metal sheets. These surfaces were inaccessible by previous climbing robots due to the following restrictions: 1. Ridges, where the magnetic force decreases to almost zero 2. Angular(More)
This paper describes a compact robot with two magnetic wheels in a bicycle arrangement, which is intended for inspecting the inner casing of pipes with complex shaped structures. The locomotion concept is based on an adapted magnetic wheel unit integrating two lateral lever arms. These arms allow for slightly lifting off the wheel in order to locally(More)
— Climbing is a challenging task for autonomous mobile robots primarily due to requirements for agile locomotion, and high maneuverability as well as robust and efficient attachment and detachment. A novel miniature wall-climbing robot is proposed. The robot is adapted for the wall-climbing task by taking advantage of down scaling and its low design.(More)
In this paper describes a pair of wall climbing robots that use magnetic wheels for adhesion. They are designed for inspecting the interior surfaces of gas-tanks in oversea ships. Environments like this were impossible to access by previous climbing robots, as they are made out of very thin sheet metal that cannot support a high robot mass and contain(More)
This paper reports on a 3 years applied research project dealing with several inspection scenarios of power plants and resulting in many robot prototypes and 3 main achievements. The project is a common effort between industry and university, including ALSTOM together with researchers from the 2 Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology. The goal is to(More)