[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Wireless communication technology is spreading quickly in almost all the information technology areas as a consequence of a gradual enhancement in quality and security of the communication, together with a decrease in the related costs. This facilitates the development of relatively low-cost teams of autonomous (robotic) mobile units that cooperate to achieve a common goal. Providing real-time communication among the team units is highly desirable for guaranteeing a predictable behavior while operating autonomously in unstructured environments. This paper proposes a MAC protocol for wireless communication that supports dynamic resource reservation for small teams of cooperative robots. The protocol uses a slotted time-triggered medium access transmission control that is collision-free, even in the presence of hidden nodes. The transmissions are scheduled according to the earliest deadline first scheduling policy. An adequate admission control guarantees the timing constraints of the team communication requirements, including when new nodes dynamically join or leave the team. The paper describes the protocol focusing on the consensus procedure that supports coherent changes in the global system. Finally, a set of simulation results are shown that illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed protocol.
Real-Time Systems Symposium, 2004. Proceedings. 25th IEEE International; 01/2005