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Cooperative control of multiple surface vessels in the presence of ocean currents and parametric model uncertainty. (English) Zbl 1204.93008
Summary: This paper addresses the problem of cooperative path-following of multiple autonomous vehicles. Stated briefly, the problem consists of steering a group of vehicles along specified paths while keeping a desired spatial formation. For a given class of autonomous surface vessels, it is shown how Lyapunov-based techniques and graph theory can be brought together to design a decentralized control structure, where the vehicle dynamics and the constraints imposed by the topology of the inter-vehicle communication network are explicitly taken into account. To achieve path-following for each vehicle, a nonlinear adaptive controller is designed that yields convergence of the trajectories of the closed-loop system to the path in the presence of constant unknown ocean currents and parametric model uncertainty. The controller derived implicitly compensates for the effect of the ocean current without the need for direct measurements of its velocity. Vehicle cooperation is achieved by adjusting the speed of each vehicle along its path according to information exchanged on the positions of a subset of the other vehicles, as determined by the communication topology adopted. Global stability and convergence of the closed-loop system are guaranteed. Illustrative examples are presented and discussed.

MSC:
93A14 Decentralized systems
93C85 Automated systems (robots, etc.) in control theory
93C41 Control/observation systems with incomplete information
93D05 Lyapunov and other classical stabilities (Lagrange, Poisson, \(L^p, l^p\), etc.) in control theory
94C15 Applications of graph theory to circuits and networks
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