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Safe and efficient collision avoidance control for autonomous vehicles

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Document pages: 27 pages

Abstract: We study a novel principle for safe and efficient collision avoidance thatadopts a mathematically elegant and general framework abstracting as much aspossible from the controlled vehicle s dynamics and of its environment. Vehicledynamics is characterized by pre-computed functions for accelerating andbraking to a given speed. Environment is modeled by a function of time givingthe free distance ahead of the controlled vehicle under the assumption that theobstacles are either fixed or are moving in the same direction. The main resultis a control policy enforcing the vehicle s speed so as to avoid collision andefficiently use the free distance ahead, provided some initial safety conditionholds. The studied principle is applied to the design of two discretecontrollers, one synchronous and another asynchronous. We show that bothcontrollers are safe by construction. Furthermore, we show that theirefficiency strictly increases for decreasing granularity of discretization. Wepresent implementations of the two controllers, their experimental evaluationin the Carla autonomous driving simulator and investigate various performanceissues.

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