Social robots should be able to search and track people in order to help them. In this paper we present two different techniques for coordinated multi-robot teams for searching and tracking people. A probability map (belief) of a target person location is maintained, and to initialize and update it, two methods were implemented and tested: one based on a reinforcement learning algorithm and the other based on a particle filter. The person is tracked if visible, otherwise an exploration is done by making a balance, for each candidate location, between the belief, the distance, and whether close locations are explored by other robots of the team. The validation of the approach was accomplished throughout an extensive set of simulations using up to five agents and a large amount of dynamic obstacles; furthermore, over three hours of real-life experiments with two robots searching and tracking were recorded and analysed.


automation, cybernetics.

Author keywords

Multi-Robot coordination, Urban Robotics, search-and-Track, Decentralized Coordination, motion real time

Scientific reference

A. Goldhoorn, A. Garrell Zulueta, R. Alquézar Mancho and A. Sanfeliu. Searching and tracking people with cooperative mobile robots. Autonomous Robots, 2018, to appear.