Obstacle following sensor scheme for a mobile robot

  • US 8,565,920 B2
  • Filed: 06/18/2009
  • Issued: 10/22/2013
  • Est. Priority Date: 01/24/2000
  • Status: Active Grant
  • ×
    • Pin Icon | RPX Insight
    • Pin
First Claim
Patent Images

1. A mobile robot comprising:

  • a drive mechanism that both drives the robot forward in a drive direction and turns the robot to change the drive direction;

    a sensor responsive to proximity of objects near a lateral side of the robot; and

    a drive controller that controls the drive mechanism to drive the robot to follow a sensed object proximate the lateral side of the robot, the drive controller configured to monitor the sensor to detect when a followed object is no longer proximate the lateral side of the robot, to initiate a turn of the robot toward the lateral side in accordance with a turning radius in response to detecting that the followed object is no longer proximate the lateral side, and then to progressively decrease the turning radius of the robot over time while driving the robot forward, thereby causing the robot to progressively turn more sharply until the robot encounters a change in sensory input,wherein the controller is configured to stop turning the robot if the robot reaches a predetermined maximum turn angle while monitoring the sensor, and to then move the robot forward along the drive direction.

View all claims