Paper by Erik D. Demaine

Erik D. Demaine, Alejandro López-Ortiz, and J. Ian Munro, “Robot Localization without Depth Perception”, in Proceedings of the 8th Scandinavian Workshop on Algorithm Theory (SWAT 2002), Lecture Notes in Computer Science, volume 2368, Turku, Finland, July 3–5, 2002, pages 249–259.

Consider the problem of placing reflectors in a 2-D environment in such a way that a robot equipped with a basic laser can always determine its current location. The robot is allowed to swivel at its current location, using the laser to detect at what angles some reflectors are visible, but no distance information is obtained. A polygonal map of the environment and reflectors is available to the robot. We show that there is always a placement of reflectors that allows the robot to localize itself from any point in the environment, and that such a reflector placement can be computed in polynomial time on a real RAM. This result improves over previous techniques which have up to a quadratic number of ambiguous points at which the robot cannot determine its location [1, 9]. Further, we show that the problem of optimal reflector placement is equivalent to an art-gallery problem within a constant factor.

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The paper is 10 pages.

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Last updated March 12, 2024 by Erik Demaine.