Synchronous rendezvous of very-low-range wireless agents
In this paper, we address the problem of temporal synchronization of a team of mobile agents on a set of rendezvous points defined by the nodes of a bipartite network. In particular, we assume very-low-range (VLR) wireless agents that travel along the edges of a bipartite network, and can only communicate with each other when they rendezvous at the nodes of the network. Temporal synchronization relies on distributed agreement protocols on the travel times and waiting times at the rendezvous points, and when integrated with the agents' motion, results in a hybrid multi-agent coordination scheme. We show that the resulting dynamic communication network is almost always eventually connected and, therefore, synchronous rendezvous of the agents on the nodes of the underlying path network is guaranteed. Unlike prior work on distributed agreement, where synchronization depends on communication, here dependence is both ways. Therefore, from a theoretical perspective our approach can be viewed as a way to jointly control communication and synchronization. We finally illustrate our approach in computer simulations. ©2010 IEEE.
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