A Virtual Simulator for the Embedded Control System Design for Navigation of Mobile Robots applied in Wheelchairs

A Virtual Simulator for the Embedded Control System Design for Navigation of Mobile Robots applied in Wheelchairs

Leonimer Flávio de Melo (State University of Londrina, Brazil), Silvia Galvão de Souza Cervantes (State University of Londrina, Brazil) and João Maurício Rosário (State University of Campinas, Brazil)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2658-4.ch011
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Abstract

This chapter presents a virtual environment implementation for embedded design, simulation, and conception of supervision and control systems for mobile robots, which are capable of operating and adapting to different environments and conditions. The purpose of this virtual system is to facilitate the development of embedded architecture systems, emphasizing the implementation of tools that allow the simulation of the kinematic, dynamic, and control conditions, in real time monitoring of all important system points. To achieve this, an open control architecture is proposed, integrating the two main techniques of robotic control implementation at the hardware level: systems microprocessors and reconfigurable hardware devices. The utilization of a hierarchic and open architecture, distributing the diverse actions of control in increasing levels of complexity and the use of resources of reconfigurable computation are made in a virtual simulator for mobile robots. The validation of this environment is made in a nonholonomic mobile robot and in a wheelchair; both of them used an embedded control rapid prototyping technique for the best navigation strategy implementation. After being tested and validated in the simulator, the control system is programmed in the control board memory of the mobile robot or wheelchair. Thus, the use of time and material is optimized, first validating the entire model virtually and then operating the physical implementation of the navigation system.
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The Mobile Robot Platform

This chapter presents the implementation of a virtual environment for simulation and conception of supervision and control systems for mobile robots and is focuses on the study of the mobile robot platform, with differential driving wheels mounted on the same axis and a free castor front wheel, whose prototype is used to validate the proposal system, as depicted in Figure 1.

Figure 1.

Mobile robot prototyping used for testing and validations

Figure 2 illustrates the principal elements and components of the mobile robot platform.

Figure 2.

Elements and components of the mobile robot platform

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