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Self Assessment-Based Decision Making for Multiagent Cooperative Search

Sujit, PB and Ghose, Debasish (2011) Self Assessment-Based Decision Making for Multiagent Cooperative Search. In: IEEE Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering, 8 (4). pp. 705-719.

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Abstract

This paper addresses a search problem with multiple limited capability search agents in a partially connected dynamical networked environment under different information structures. A self assessment-based decision-making scheme for multiple agents is proposed that uses a modified negotiation scheme with low communication overheads. The scheme has attractive features of fast decision-making and scalability to large number of agents without increasing the complexity of the algorithm. Two models of the self assessment schemes are developed to study the effect of increase in information exchange during decision-making. Some analytical results on the maximum number of self assessment cycles, effect of increasing communication range, completeness of the algorithm, lower bound and upper bound on the search time are also obtained. The performance of the various self assessment schemes in terms of total uncertainty reduction in the search region, using different information structures is studied. It is shown that the communication requirement for self assessment scheme is almost half of the negotiation schemes and its performance is close to the optimal solution. Comparisons with different sequential search schemes are also carried out. Note to Practitioners-In the futuristic military and civilian applications such as search and rescue, surveillance, patrol, oil spill, etc., a swarm of UAVs can be deployed to carry out the mission for information collection. These UAVs have limited sensor and communication ranges. In order to enhance the performance of the mission and to complete the mission quickly, cooperation between UAVs is important. Designing cooperative search strategies for multiple UAVs with these constraints is a difficult task. Apart from this, another requirement in the hostile territory is to minimize communication while making decisions. This adds further complexity to the decision-making algorithms. In this paper, a self-assessment-based decision-making scheme, for multiple UAVs performing a search mission, is proposed. The agents make their decisions based on the information acquired through their sensors and by cooperation with neighbors. The complexity of the decision-making scheme is very low. It can arrive at decisions fast with low communication overheads, while accommodating various information structures used for increasing the fidelity of the uncertainty maps. Theoretical results proving completeness of the algorithm and the lower and upper bounds on the search time are also provided.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Copyright 2011 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted.However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works must be obtained from the IEEE.
Keywords: Autonomous system;multiagent decision-making;multiagent search;negotiation;self assessment
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Aerospace Engineering (Formerly, Aeronautical Engineering)
Date Deposited: 04 Nov 2011 09:45
Last Modified: 04 Nov 2011 09:45
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ernet.in/id/eprint/41827

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