The problem of planning a set of paths for the coalition of robots (agents) with different capabilities is considered in the paper. Some agents can modify the environment by destructing the obstacles thus allowing the other ones to shorten their paths to the goal. As a result the mutual solution of lower cost, e.g. time to completion, may be acquired. We suggest an original procedure to identify the obstacles for further removal that can be embedded into almost any heuristic search planner (we use Theta*) and evaluate it empirically. Results of the evaluation show that time-to-complete the mission can be decreased up to 9–12 % by utilizing the proposed technique.
Problem of finding 2D paths of special shape, e.g. paths comprised of line segments having the property that the angle between any two consecutive segments does not exceed the predefined threshold, is considered in the paper. This problem is harder to solve than the one when shortest paths of any shape are sought, since the planer’s search space is substantially bigger as multiple search nodes corresponding to the same location need to be considered. One way to reduce the search effort is to fix the length of the path’s segment and to prune the nodes that violate the imposed constraint. This leads to incompleteness and to the sensitivity of the’s performance to chosen parameter value. In this work we introduce a novel technique that reduces this sensitivity by automatically adjusting the length of the path’s segment on-the-fly, e.g. during the search. Embedding this technique into the known grid-based angle-constrained path finding algorithm LIAN, leads to notable increase of the planner’s effectiveness, e.g. success rate, while keeping efficiency, e.g. runtime, overhead at reasonable level. Experimental evaluation shows that LIAN with the suggested enhancements, dubbed eLIAN, solves up to 20% of tasks more compared to the predecessor. Meanwhile, the solution quality of eLIAN is nearly the same as the one of LIAN.