Simultaneous mobile sink allocation in home environments with applications in mobile consumer robotics

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Chanak, Prasenjit ; Banerjee, Indrajit ; Sherratt, R. Simon (2015)

This paper presents a novel mobile sink area allocation scheme for consumer based mobile robotic devices with a proven application to robotic vacuum cleaners. In the home or office environment, rooms are physically separated by walls and an automated robotic cleaner cannot make a decision about which room to move to and perform the cleaning task. Likewise, state of the art cleaning robots do not move to other rooms without direct human interference. In a smart home monitoring system, sensor nodes may be deployed to monitor each separate room.\ud In this work, a quad tree based data gathering scheme is proposed whereby the mobile sink physically moves through every room and logically links all separated sub-networks together. The proposed scheme sequentially collects data from the monitoring environment and transmits the information back to a base station. According to the sensor nodes information, the base station can command a cleaning robot to move to a specific location in the home environment. The quad tree based data gathering scheme minimizes the data gathering tour length and time through the efficient allocation of data gathering areas. A calculated shortest path data gathering tour can efficiently be allocated to the robotic cleaner to complete the cleaning task within a minimum time period. Simulation results show that the proposed scheme can effectively allocate and control the cleaning area to the robot vacuum cleaner without any direct interference from the consumer. The performance of the proposed scheme is then validated with a set of practical sequential data gathering tours in a typical office/home environment.
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