Autonomous Robots

This module will introduce basic concepts and techniques used within the field of mobile autonomous robots. It covers the principles of robot motion, forward and inverse kinematics of wheeled platforms, and provides a general overview of mobile robot control architectures, with an emphasis on the use of wheeled mobile robots and manipulators in industry and society. Areas including perception, error propagation, localization and path planning are presented.  This module also provides a concise study of modeling, control, and navigation methods for wheeled non-holonomic and omnidirectional mobile robots and manipulators. The module begins with a study of mobile robot drives and corresponding kinematic and dynamic models, and discusses the sensors used in mobile robotics. It then examines a variety of model-based, model-free, and vision-based controllers, with a comparison of stabilization and tracking performance. In addition, the problems of path, motion, and task planning, along with localization and mapping topics are covered.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this module you will be able to:

  • Describe the main components in an autonomous robot
  • Explain the difference between static and dynamic stability
  • List five applications for wheeled mobile robots (WMRs)
  • Describe the main operating principle of the differential wheeled robot
  • Differentiate between a quadruped and a 4-wheeled WMR
  • Explain the purpose of the “right hand rule” in mobile robotics
  • List three of the most common WMR sensors
  • Define spatial perception
  • Name the four building blocks of robot navigation
  • Describe waypoint GPS navigation