Decoupling Constraints from Sampling-Based Planners

Z. Kingston, M. Moll, and L. E. Kavraki, “Decoupling Constraints from Sampling-Based Planners,” in Proceedings of the International Symposium of Robotics Research, Puerto Varas, Chile, 2017.


We present a general unifying framework for sampling-based motion planning under kinematic task constraints which enables a broad class of planners to compute plans that satisfy a given constraint function that encodes, e.g., loop closure, balance, and end-effector constraints. The framework decouples a planner’s method for exploration from constraint satisfaction by representing the implicit configuration space defined by a constraint function. We emulate three constraint satisfaction methodologies from the literature, and demonstrate the framework with a range of planners utilizing these constraint methodologies. Our results show that the appropriate choice of constrained satisfaction methodology depends on many factors, e.g., the dimension of the configuration space and implicit constraint manifold, and number of obstacles. Furthermore, we show that novel combinations of planners and constraint satisfaction methodologies can be more effective than previous approaches. The framework is also easily extended for novel planners and constraint spaces.

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