Date of Original Version

1999

Type

Conference Proceeding

Abstract or Description

This paper presents a distributed planning and control architecture for autonomous Multi-Manipulator Systems (MMS). The control architecture is implemented using an agent-based approach. A team of distributed and autonomous agents is deployed to model the flexible assembly system in such a way that the agents negotiate, collaborate, and cooperate to achieve the goals of assembly tasks.

The main focus of this paper is on assembly task allocation and assembly task execution. We describe the agent models and communication mechanism, and explain how they handle complex interactions among agents. A distributed trajectory planning approach based on artificial potential fields is also presented.

Experimental results show that our multi-agent planning and control framework is suitable for flexible robotic assembly tasks. Our approach addresses the issues of flexibility, scalability, reconfigurability, and fault-tolerance. We anticipate that the same approach can be applied to other flexible manufacturing environments.

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