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Map Building Method for Urban Gas Pipelines Based on Landmark Detection

Dong-Hyuk Lee, Hyungpil Moon, Ja Choon Koo, and Hyouk Ryeol Choi*
International Journal of Control, Automation, and Systems, vol. 11, no. 1, pp.127-135, 2013

Abstract : This paper presents a map building method for an in-pipe robot to navigate inside urban gas pipelines autonomously, whose configuration is unknown or partially known. In the first, we explain the reason why the navigation in the pipeline is difficult and then, present a method for obtaining a robot’s posture by using a pipeline’s unique geometrical features. The robot can obtain its heading direction by detecting the standardized geometries of pipe elements. Based on the method, we propose a robot controller consisting of discrete and continuous controllers. The discrete controller is activated by pre-defined events and generates appropriate paths for exploration. The continuous controller receives the desired path and physically moves the robot to the desired path. The method is implemented in an in-pipe robot, called MRINSPECT-V and its effectiveness is validated.

Keyword : In-pipe robot, landmark, map building, urban gas pipeline.

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