next up previous contents
Next: Dynamically Estimating Pose Up: Active Perception Previous: Enhanced 3D Representation

Model Building and Autonomous Exploration

The projects described in the following section are part of a research effort investigating the problem of how to build three-dimensional descriptions of shape from information collected by multiple sensors, at different time instances, and at different positions within the environment of a robot. The principal objectives of this work are: i) to understand how basic inferences about shape (e.g. surfaces) are drawn from sensor data, ii) how the geometric structure of an object is encoded in its surfaces, iii) how generic models (e.g. volumetric, part-oriented) are computed from shape inferences and surface measurements, and iv) how an autonomous agent can build a description of a scene based on such models using only general purpose information. The resulting models are subsequently used for purposes of object manipulation and recognition. A key element of this research is that it addresses the problem of determining how an automonous agent (e.g. a mobile sensor) uses the information collected or inferred at one location to plan subsequent trajectories for gathering further information. By understanding the exact nature of how inferences at different levels of abstraction are perturbed by measurements, one can then prescribe where (new vantage points) and how (specific sensors and modalities) to make additional measurements so that the overall ambiguity is reduced. This is somewhat related to the idea of active perception, but at a more global level. We have completed the first implementation of our autonomous exploration system and have successfully demonstrated the automatic generation of a complete scene description based on a sequence of exploratory probes. This work has also been successfully implemented in a mobile robotics environment in which a mobile robot equipped with a laser light stripper navigates around a scene collecting information under the control of the autonomous explorer. Work is currently in progress to extend this research further to other sensor modalities and dynamic scene representation.

F. Ferrie

The Autonomous Explorer



next up previous contents
Next: Dynamically Estimating Pose Up: Active Perception Previous: Enhanced 3D Representation



Thierry Baron
Mon Nov 13 10:43:02 EST 1995