Mixed Discrete-Continuous Heuristic Generative Planning Based on Flow Tubes / 1565
Enrique Fernandez-Gonzalez, Erez Karpas, Brian C. Williams
Nowadays, robots are programmed with a mix of discrete and continuous low level behaviors by experts in a very time consuming and expensive process. Existing automated planning approaches are either based on hybrid model predictive control techniques, which do not scale well due to time discretization, or temporal planners, which sacrifice plan expressivity by only supporting discretized fixed rates of change in continuous effects. We introduce Scotty, a mixed discrete-continuous generative planner that finds the middle ground between these two. Scotty can reason with linear time evolving effects whose behaviors can be modified by bounded control variables, with no discretization involved. Our planner exploits the expressivity of flow tubes, which compactly encapsulate continuous effects, and the performance of heuristic forward search. The generated solution plans are better suited for robust execution, as executives can use the flexibility in both time and continuous control variables to react to disturbances.