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Basic Concepts and Methods for Keeping Autonomous Ground Vehicle Formations



Yigal Moscovitz, Nicholas DeClaris


A desirable basic behavior of a group of autonomous vehicles while in motion is to keep a predefined formation. Normally units are trained to move in formation according to an operational status. Past experience determines the formation for given situations. In this paper, we discuss concepts pertinent to the theory and design of autonomous vehicles moving in formation. Specifically: 1) we present the basic idea of controlling the behavior of autonomous vehicles to keep them in prespecified formation, 2) we examine difficulties in keeping the formation caused by path shapes and obstacles in the path of the vehicles and due to the kinematics and dynamics of the individual vehicle, and 3) we discuss concepts relevant to reformation transitions following temporary changes in the formation caused by the terrain properties and the presence of obstacles.
Proceedings Title
Proceedings of the ISIC/CIRA/ISAS ''98 Conference
Conference Dates
September 14-17, 1998
Conference Location
Gaithersburg, MD
Conference Title
ISIC/CIRA/ISAS ''98 Conference


Mobility, Unmanned Systems, Control, control of autonomous vehicle, design methods, formation keeping


Moscovitz, Y. and DeClaris, N. (1998), Basic Concepts and Methods for Keeping Autonomous Ground Vehicle Formations, Proceedings of the ISIC/CIRA/ISAS ''98 Conference, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed May 22, 2024)


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Created September 1, 1998, Updated February 17, 2017