Synthesis-Based Engineering of Supervisory Controllers for Autonomous Robotic Navigation

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When mobile robots are employed in transportation tasks involving contact with humans, their control software shall guarantee that in every possible circumstance safety and, in general, task requirements are guaranteed. When control models are manually translated into an executable implementation, it becomes cumbersome to provide such guarantees. Model-driven engineering approaches provide an answer to such a problem. Domain specific models are automatically translated into an executable implementation. Some model-driven engineering approaches exist that are specific to robotics. However, formal guarantees on correctness of the model and the generated implementation with respect to the requirements are, often, not provided. This paper investigates how a general purpose modelling language for supervisory controller synthesis can be used to formally model plants and requirements for a robotic navigation task and can generate an executable implementation that can be integrated into a leading middleware for robotic applications. The starting point is the modelling of the interface provided by existing navigation components available in the targeted middleware. We demonstrate, with simulations and real-life experiments, that the generated supervisory controller is suitable for real-time deployment and guarantees correctness of the model with respect to the requirements of the navigation task at hand. Results on the reaction time of the supervisory controller show that such reaction time is about twenty times smaller than the one of the same supervisory controller implemented with a conventional framework.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-264
Number of pages6
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Event16th IFAC Symposium Control in Transportation Systems, ONLINE - Lille, France
Duration: 8 Jun 202110 Jun 2021


  • Autonomous robotic systems
  • Guidance navigation
  • Mobile robots
  • Modeling
  • Supervisory control
  • automata
  • control


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