Differential Evolution for Efficient AUV Path Planning in Time Variant Uncertain Underwater Environment

Zadeh, S. Mahmoud, Powers, D. M. W., Yazdani, A., Sammut, K., Atyabi, A

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence 

The AUV three-dimension path planning in complex turbulent underwater environment is investigated in this research, in which static current map data and uncertain static-moving time variant obstacles are taken into account. Robustness of AUVs path planning to this strong variability is known as a complex NP-hard problem and is considered a critical issue to ensure vehicles safe deployment. Efficient evolutionary techniques have substantial potential of handling NP hard complexity of path planning problem as more powerful and fast algorithms among other approaches for mentioned problem. For the purpose of this research Differential Evolution (DE) technique is conducted to solve the AUV path planning problem in a realistic underwater environment. The path planners designed in this paper are capable of extracting feasible areas of a real map to determine the allowed spaces for deployment, where coastal area, islands, static/dynamic obstacles and ocean current is taken into account and provides the efficient path with a small computation time. The results obtained from analyze of experimental demonstrate the inherent robustness and drastic efficiency of the proposed scheme in enhancement of the vehicles path planning capability in coping undesired current, using useful current flow, and avoid colliding collision boundaries in a real-time manner. The proposed approach is also flexible and strictly respects to vehicle's kinematic constraints resisting current instabilities.

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