Rolling Dispersion and Exploration for Robot Teams / 3223
Elizabeth A. Jensen

After a disaster, human rescuers may have to wait for better conditions before beginning to search for survivors. A team of robots could enter long before the humans and scope out the environment to gather information that could help to prioritize tasks for the rescue operation. We have developed an algorithm to allow a small group of robots to progressively explore an unknown environment, moving as a group until full exploration is achieved. The novel concept behind this algorithm comes from the way in which the team stays together as a group, maintaining communication, in order to ensure full exploration as well as a path to the exit. We demonstrate in simulation that the algorithm works in multiple environments under varying conditions.