Decentralized Searching of Multiple Unknown and Transient Radio Sources with Paired Robots

Chang Young Kim, Dezhen Song, Jingang Yi, Xinyu Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper, we develop a decentralized algorithm to coordinate a group of mobile robots to search for unknown and transient radio sources. In addition to limited mobility and ranges of communication and sensing, the robot team has to deal with challenges from signal source anonymity, short transmission duration, and variable transmission power. We propose a two-step approach: First, we decentralize belief functions that robots use to track source locations using checkpoint-based synchronization, and second, we propose a decentralized planning strategy to coordinate robots to ensure the existence of checkpoints. We analyze memory usage, data amount in communication, and searching time for the proposed algorithm. We have implemented the proposed algorithm and compared it with two heuristics. The experimental results show that our algorithm successfully trades a modest amount of memory for the fastest searching time among the three methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)58-65
Number of pages8
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Materials Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Engineering(all)


  • networked robots
  • transient targets
  • wireless localization

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