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  1. This paper studies a defense approach against one or more swarms of adversarial agents. In our earlier work, we employed a closed formation (“StringNet”) of defending agents (defenders) around a swarm of adversarial agents (attackers) to confine their motion within given bounds, and guide them to a safe area. The adversarial agents were assumed to remain close enough to each other, i.e., within a prescribed connectivity region. To handle situations when the attackers no longer stay within such a connectivity region, but rather split into smaller swarms (clusters) to maximize the chance or impact of attack, this paper proposes an approach to learn the attacking sub-swarms and reassign defenders toward the attackers. We use a “Density-based Spatial Clustering of Application with Noise (DBSCAN)” algorithm to identify the spatially distributed swarms of the attackers. Then, the defenders are assigned to each identified swarm of attackers by solving a constrained generalized assignment problem. We also provide conditions under which defenders can successfully herd all the attackers. The efficacy of the approach is demonstrated via computer simulations, as well as hardware experiments with a fleet of quadrotors.
  2. Flat surfaces captured by 3D point clouds are often used for localization, mapping, and modeling. Dense point cloud processing has high computation and memory costs making low-dimensional representations of flat surfaces such as polygons desirable. We present Polylidar3D, a non-convex polygon extraction algorithm which takes as input unorganized 3D point clouds (e.g., LiDAR data), organized point clouds (e.g., range images), or user-provided meshes. Non-convex polygons represent flat surfaces in an environment with interior cutouts representing obstacles or holes. The Polylidar3D front-end transforms input data into a half-edge triangular mesh. This representation provides a common level of abstraction for subsequent back-end processing. The Polylidar3D back-end is composed of four core algorithms: mesh smoothing, dominant plane normal estimation, planar segment extraction, and finally polygon extraction. Polylidar3D is shown to be quite fast, making use of CPU multi-threading and GPU acceleration when available. We demonstrate Polylidar3D’s versatility and speed with real-world datasets including aerial LiDAR point clouds for rooftop mapping, autonomous driving LiDAR point clouds for road surface detection, and RGBD cameras for indoor floor/wall detection. We also evaluate Polylidar3D on a challenging planar segmentation benchmark dataset. Results consistently show excellent speed and accuracy.
  3. Geographic information systems (GIS) provide accurate maps of terrain, roads, waterways, and building footprints and heights. Aircraft, particularly small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), can exploit this and additional information such as building roof structure to improve navigation accuracy and safely perform contingency landings particularly in urban regions. However, building roof structure is not fully provided in maps. This paper proposes a method to automatically label building roof shape from publicly available GIS data. Satellite imagery and airborne LiDAR data are processed and manually labeled to create a diverse annotated roof image dataset for small to large urban cities. Multiple convolutional neural network (CNN) architectures are trained and tested, with the best performing networks providing a condensed feature set for support vector machine and decision tree classifiers. Satellite image and LiDAR data fusion is shown to provide greater classification accuracy than using either data type alone. Model confidence thresholds are adjusted leading to significant increases in models precision. Networks trained from roof data in Witten, Germany and Manhattan (New York City) are evaluated on independent data from these cities and Ann Arbor, Michigan.