Multi-robot pursuit-evasion

This algorithm addresses a distributed, visibility-based pursuit-evasion problem in which one or more searchers must coordinate to guarantee detection of any and all evaders in an unknown planar environment while using only local information. The motivation is to develop algorithms to enable teams of robots to perform bomb or intruder detection and other related security tasks. It is a distributed clearing algorithm for a team of d-searchers with limited range sensors.

The algorithm presented in [1] is built around guaranteeing complete coverage of the frontier between cleared and contaminated areas while expanding the cleared area. A novel approach to storing and updating the global frontier enables the algorithm to be truly distributed. A preliminary version of the algorithm has been presented in [2].

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Experiments with ground vehicles.



An extension of the previous works to to the case of aerial robots with onboard cameras has been presented here [3]


  1. Durham JW, Franchi A, Bullo F. Distributed Pursuit-Evasion without Mapping or Global Localization via Local Frontiers. Autonomous Robots [Internet]. 2012 ;32(1):81-95. Available from:
  2. Durham JW, Franchi A, Bullo F. Distributed Pursuit-Evasion with Limited-Visibility Sensor Via Frontier-based Exploration. In: 2010 IEEE Int. Conf. on Robotics and Automation. 2010 IEEE Int. Conf. on Robotics and Automation. Anchorage, AK; 2010. pp. 3562-3568.
  3. Gagliardi M, Oriolo G, Bülthoff HH, Franchi A. Image-based Road Network Clearing without Localization and without Maps using a Team of UAVs. In: 2014 European Control Conference. 2014 European Control Conference. Strasbourg, France; 2014. pp. 1902-1908.

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