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Creators/Authors contains: "Han, Shuai"

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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2023
  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2023
  3. In this work, we systematically examine the application of spatio-temporal splitting heuristics to the Multi-Robot Motion Planning (MRMP) problem in a graph-theoretic setting: a problem known to be NP-hard to optimally solve. Following the divide-and-conquer principle, we design multiple spatial and temporal splitting schemes that can be applied to any existing MRMP algorithm, including integer programming solvers and Enhanced Conflict Based Search, in an orthogonal manner. The combination of a good baseline MRMP algorithm with a proper splitting heuristic proves highly effective, allowing the resolution of problems 10+ times than what is possible previously, as corroborated by extensive numerical evaluations. Notably, spatial partition of problem fusing with the temporal splitting heuristic and the enhanced conflict based search (ECBS) algorithm increases the scalability of ECBS on large and challenging DAO maps by 5–15 folds with negligible impact on solution optimality.
  4. We propose a Deep Interaction Prediction Net- work (DIPN) for learning to predict complex interactions that ensue as a robot end-effector pushes multiple objects, whose physical properties, including size, shape, mass, and friction coefficients may be unknown a priori. DIPN “imagines” the effect of a push action and generates an accurate synthetic image of the predicted outcome. DIPN is shown to be sample efficient when trained in simulation or with a real robotic system. The high accuracy of DIPN allows direct integration with a grasp network, yielding a robotic manipulation system capable of executing challenging clutter removal tasks while being trained in a fully self-supervised manner. The overall network demonstrates intelligent behavior in selecting proper actions between push and grasp for completing clutter removal tasks and significantly outperforms the previous state-of-the- art. Remarkably, DIPN achieves even better performance on the real robotic hardware system than in simulation.
  5. Integer programming (IP) has proven to be highly effective in solving many path-based optimization problems in robotics. However, the applications of IP are generally done in an ad-hoc, problem-specific manner. In this work, after examined a wide range of path-based optimization problems, we describe an IP solution methodology for these problems that is both easy to apply (in two simple steps) and high-performance in terms of the computation time and the achieved optimal- ity. We demonstrate the generality of our approach through the application to three challenging path-based optimization problems: multi-robot path planning (MPP), minimum constraint removal (MCR), and reward collection problems (RCPs). Associ- ated experiments show that the approach can efficiently produce (near-)optimal solutions for problems with large state spaces, complex constraints, and complicated objective functions. In conjunction with the proposition of the IP methodology, we introduce two new and practical robotics problems: multi-robot minimum constraint removal (MMCR) and multi-robot path planning (MPP) with partial solutions, which can be quickly and effectively solved using our proposed IP solution pipeline.