Hormone-Inspired Self-Organization and Distributed Control of Robotic Swarms


Abstract: The control of robot swarming in a distributed manner is a difficult problem because global behaviors must emerge as a result of many local actions. This paper uses a bio-inspired control method called the Digital Hormone Model (DHM) to control the tasking and executing of robot swarms based on local communication, signal propagation, and stochastic reactions. The DHM model is probabilistic, dynamic, fault-tolerant, computationally efficient, and can be easily tasked to change global behavior. Different from most existing distributed control and learning mechanisms, DHM considers the topological structure of the organization, supports dynamic reconfiguration and self-organization, and requires no globally unique identifiers for individual robots. The paper describes the DHM and presents the experimental results on simulating biological observations in the forming of feathers, and simulating wireless communicated swarm behavior at a large scale for attacking target, forming sensor networks, self-repairing, and avoiding pitfalls in mission execution.

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