The constriction decomposition method for coverage path planning

Abstract

The task of coverage path planning in 2D indoor and outdoor environments is classified as a NP-hard problem, and has been an active research topic for over 30 years. We derive a novel, exact cellular decomposition method called the Constriction Decomposition Method (CDM) and apply it to complex indoor environments. The CDM rapidly identifies constriction points in the environment and decomposes the environment into easily traversable cells by exploiting the geometric information contained in the environment's straight skeleton. Several heuristic path planning methods that find paths that completely cover each cell are explored. We apply our method on a complex indoor office-like environment and compare our results to existing methods.

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