An emergent wall following behaviour to escape local minima for swarms of agents

Mohamed H. Mabrouk, Colin R. McInnes

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Natural examples of emergent behaviour, in groups due to interactions among the group's individuals, are numerous. Our aim, in this paper, is to use complex emergent behaviour among agents that interact via pair-wise attractive and repulsive potentials, to solve the local minima problem in the artificial potential based navigation method. We present a modified potential field based path planning algorithm, which uses agent internal states and swarm emergent behaviour to enhance group performance. The algorithm is used successfully to solve a reactive path-planning problem that cannot be solved using conventional static potential fields due to local minima formation. Simulation results demonstrate the ability of a swarm of agents to perform problem solving using the dynamic internal states of the agents along with emergent behaviour of the entire group.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)IJCS-35
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Computer Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008


  • agent internal states
  • local minima escape
  • swarm emergent behaviour
  • wall following
  • navigation systems


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