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Robot Motion Planning, Workshop, Spring 2020

Workshop (sadna)

Spring 2020, 0368-3535-01

Lecture: Wednesday, 13:00-15:00, Physics Shenkar 222

Instructor: Dan Halperin, [email protected]
Office hours by appointment

Teaching assistant: Michal Kleinbort (balasmic AT post tau ac il)

Autonomous Drones Lab leader: Yoni Mandel (yehon2 AT mail tau ac il)

Software helpdesk: Nir Goren (nirgoren at mail tau ac il)

General information

Motion-planing algorithms compute collision-free motion paths for objects that move among obstacles.  They arise in robotics, graphical animation, surgical planning, navigation systems, computational biology and computer games, among other domains. In this workshop we will explore and apply algorithms for several robot systems, for example: (i) a fleet of blue robots that need to collect items in an environment cluttered with obstacles, while avoiding a fleet of red robots; (ii) two robot arms that need to carry out a joint task; (ii) drones that need to carry out a prescribed task while avoiding obstacles on their way as well as other drones.

A typical project involves implementing an algorithm and simulating the behavior of robots in software.

There is also an option to work with physical drones in the autonomous drones lab in the school of engineering.

Autonomous drowns lab project

Autonomous navigation using Apriltags [presentation]

Links to past projects

aranoid Android

Drone project:






iRobot project:






RoBoat project: Robotic boat

Related projects to stimulate ideas (not past Sadna projects):

Multi robot motion planning:

Dual arm rearrangement:

  • Mini Supertanker:

The first meetings

In the beginning of the workshop, we will present you with the very basics of algorithmic motion planning and lay out possible projects:

  • 11/3/20 – Introduction to robot motion planning + suggested projects
  • 18/3/20 – Software tools
Later on there will be separate/dedicated meetings with each team


Course requirements and milestones

  • Teamwork: The project is intended to involve a significant amount of teamwork. The recommended team size is three. Each group will choose a project among the list of projects, and submit the final project later in the summer.
  • Milestones: In order to make sure you successfully complete the project, you will be required to the following milestones:

          The schedule is tentative and subject to change; please stay tuned.

    1. 25/3/20 – Class meeting: Teaming up and choosing a project
      You will submit a short description of the selected project (title + one or two paragraphs with the basic details) in class.
    2. 22/4/20 – Submitting an initial project plan (by e-mail to Michal):
      An initial description of the project and the work plan (2-3 pages):
      a. Title
      b. Description (~100-200 words) of the project’s main idea.
      c. Brief description of project from a user point of view (input / output, etc.)
      d. Algorithmic details.
      e. The major programming tasks (engine, user interface, etc.)
      f.  Milestones towards the final goal.
      g. Tools that are going to help you program / run the project (libraries, programming languages, etc.).
      h. Open questions, conflicts and so on.
    3. 29/7/20 (at 14:10) – Zoom meeting: Project “Proof of Concept”
      By this time, you will be required to show that the basic technical infrastructure of the project works (e.g. tools or programming libraries that need to be installed, etc.). Please prepare to present your project and talk about it for 10-15 minutes.
    4. End of August – Individual meetings: Presenting the basic prototype (probably via zoom)
      At this point in time, we will want to see your development progress, in order to make sure you are working in the right direction. You will show us a basic prototype of the final project. The prototype is expected to be a relatively small part of the final project (it is not expected to be fully functional). However, it should give a very good feeling of where you’re heading.
    5. 16/9/20 (at 16:00) – Class meeting: Competition + submission of the final project + presentation.  (probably via zoom)

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