A Distributed Algorithm for Gathering Many Fat Mobile Robots in the Plane

Chrysovalandis Agathangelou, Chryssis Georgiou, and Marios Mavronicolas

Abstract: We revisit the problem of gathering autonomous robots in the plane. In particular, we consider non-transparent unit-disc robots (i.e., fat) in an asynchronous setting with vision as the only means of coordination and robots only make local decisions. We use a state-machine representation to formulate the gathering problem and develop a distributed algorithm that solves the problem for any number of fat robots. The main idea behind the algorithm is to enforce the robots to reach a configuration in which all the following hold: (a) The robots’ centers form a convex hull in which all robots are on the convex, (b) Each robot can see all other robots, and (c) The configuration is connected: every robot touches another robot and all robots form together a connected formation.
We show that starting from any initial configuration, the fat robots eventually reach such a configuration and terminate yielding a solution to the gathering problem.

Guest: Chrysovalandis Agathangelou
Host: Shantanu Das

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