Many robot applications call for autonomous exploration and mapping of unknown and unstructured environments. Information-based exploration techniques, such as Cauchy-Schwarz quadratic mutual information (CSQMI) and fast Shannon mutual information (FSMI), have successfully achieved active binary occupancy mapping with range measurements. However, as we envision robots performing complex tasks specified with semantically meaningful objects, it is necessary to capture semantic categories in the measurements, map representation, and exploration objective. This work develops a Bayesian multi-class mapping algorithm utilizing range-category measurements. We derive a closed-form efficiently computable lower bound for the Shannon mutual information between the multi-class map and the measurements. The bound allows rapid evaluation of many potential robot trajectories for autonomous exploration and mapping. We compare our method against frontier-based and FSMI exploration and apply it in a 3-D photo-realistic simulation environment.
Capability: T3C1A: Active Multi-Robot Information Acquisition
Points of Contact: Nikolay Atanasov (PI) and Arash Asgharivaskasi
Citation: A. Asgharivaskasi and N. Atanasov, “Active Bayesian Multi-class Mapping from Range and Semantic Segmentation Observations,” IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 2021.