Asynchronous network formation in unknown unbounded environments

Selim Engin, Volkan Isler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


In this paper, we study the Online Network Formation Problem (ONFP) for a mobile multi-robot system. Consider a group of robots with a bounded communication range operating in a large open area. One of the robots has a piece of information which has to be propagated to all other robots. What strategy should the robots pursue to disseminate the information to the rest of the robots as quickly as possible? The initial locations of the robots are unknown to each other, therefore the problem must be solved in an online fashion. For this problem, we present an algorithm whose competitive ratio is O(H \cdot\max\{M,\ \sqrt{MH}\}) for arbitrary robot deployments, where M is the largest edge length in the Euclidean minimum spanning tree on the initial robot configuration and H is the height of the tree. We also study the case when the robot initial positions are chosen uniformly at random and improve the ratio to O(M). Finally, we present simulation results to validate the performance in larger scales and demonstrate our algorithm using three robots in a field experiment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2019 International Conference on Robotics and Automation, ICRA 2019
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9781538660263
StatePublished - May 2019
Event2019 International Conference on Robotics and Automation, ICRA 2019 - Montreal, Canada
Duration: May 20 2019May 24 2019

Publication series

NameProceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
ISSN (Print)1050-4729


Conference2019 International Conference on Robotics and Automation, ICRA 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
*This work was supported by the NSF grant #1617718 and a Minnesota State LCCMR grant 1Selim Engin and Volkan Isler are with Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Minnesota, MN 55455, USA


Dive into the research topics of 'Asynchronous network formation in unknown unbounded environments'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this