Multi-robot cooperation

Autonomous, cooperative robotic systems are becoming increasingly important for both industry and science. The aim of the ARCHES consortium is to research cross-domain, interdisciplinary technologies that can provide the basis for solutions to the societal challenges ahead. ARCHES endeavours to combine the various, and as yet, very specifc robotic developments of three Helmholtz research areas, thereby developing technological advances in Germany and beyond.

ARCHES will use robot hardware that can meet the characteristically stringent robustness and reliability requirements of two domains: deep-sea and planetary exploration. The adaptation of confgurable carrier systems will pursue the aim of optimally exploiting the potential synergies of a competence network. The focus is on researching methods for the joint analysis and interpretation of data by the robots within the network. The intelligent automation and cooperation of the systems will also play a central role. Both aspects are essential, as the independent operation of the robotic network is a basic prerequisite for the missions under consideration. Consequently, the motivation is to research approaches to autonomous navigation in unknown areas, intelligent interaction with the surroundings, self-suffcient energy management and the self-organisation of communication with mission headquarters and within the network. For human interaction, an interface must be created for planning the mission and organising the robots. ARCHES also creates the basis for opening up applications in medicine and therapy, logistics and autonomous urban transport. In the long-term, for example, an autonomous robotic transport network can help to ensure individual independence, as well as the mobility and care of an increasingly ageing society.

German Aerospace Center (DLR)

Armin Wedler · E-Mail: ·