In this article we will dive into Command And Control models for robotic swarms. A robotic swarm is a group of interlinked robots that work together to achieve a certain goal using collective and collaborative behavior. A swarm can consist of a couple or several thousand units, it all depends on the goal. Whereas some might recognize the word drone swarm from a military perspective it’s definitely not the only area in which drone swarms are used today. Take for example this video, where drones are used instead of fireworks at several events.
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Some might argue that in order for a group of robots to be called a robotic swarm they most utilize a certain degree of autonomy and decentralization. This might be true, but in this article we will also include command and control models that does not focus on decentralization. The modals can be applied to any kind of robot swarm and is not limited to Drone swarms like the above video.
To understand the word robot, lets take a look at what defines a generic robot. In most cases such consist of the following three elements.
- Sensing: The robot is sensing its surrounding. This could be through a Camera or using a GPS.
- Decision making: The robot process the input given by the sensing components/hardware in order to make a given decision.
- Acting: Based on the decision made, the robot will execute the steps associated with that decision.
The above three element of a generic robot can be scaled from a individual unit into a robotic swarm consisting of several thousand units as the swarm will sense, decide and act together.