Collaborative Multi-Robot Formation Control and Global Path Optimization

Di Liang, Liu Zhongyi, Ran Bhamra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


For multi-robot cooperative formation and global path planning, we propose to adjust the repulsive field function and insert a dynamic virtual target point to solve the local minima and target unreachability problems of the traditional artificial potential field (APF) method. The convergence speed and global optimization accuracy of ant colony optimization (ACO) are improved by introducing improved state transfer functions with heuristic information of the artificial potential field method and optimizing the pheromone concentration update rules. A hybrid algorithm combining APF and improved ACO is used to calculate an optimal path from the starting point to the end point for the leader robot. A cooperative multi-robot formation control method combining graph theory and consistency algorithm is proposed based on path planning of the leader robot. Taking AGVs in a logistics distribution center as an example, the feasibility of the improved algorithm and its effectiveness in solving the multi-robot path planning problem are verified.
Original languageEnglish
Article number7046
Number of pages14
JournalApplied Sciences (Switzerland)
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 12 Jul 2022


  • artificial potential field; ant colony optimization; graph theory; multi-robot formation control; consistency algorithm

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