Yanumula V. Karteek, Indrani Kar, and Somanath Majhi


Consensus; networked multi-agent system; switching topologiesbased on position; back-tracking; history following


This paper proposes two algorithms, namely “back-tracking and “history following , to reach consensus in case of communication loss for a network of distributed agents with switching topologies. To reach consensus in distributed control, considered communication topology forms a strongly connected graph. The graph is no more strongly connected whenever an agent loses communication. Whenever an agent loses communication, the topology is no more strongly connected. The proposed back-tracking algorithm makes sure that the agent backtracks its position unless the communication is re-established, and the path is changed to reach consensus. In history following, the agents use their memory and move towards previous consensus point until the communication is regained. Upon regaining communication, a new consensus point is calculated depending on the current positions of the agents and they change their trajectories accordingly. Simulation results, for a network of six agents, show that when the agents follow the previous history, the average consensus time is less than that of back-tracking. However, situation may arise in history following where a false notion of reaching consensus makes one of the agents stop at a point near to the actual consensus point. An obstacle avoidance algorithm is integrated with the proposed algorithms to avoid collisions. Hardware implementation for a three robots system shows the effectiveness of the algorithms.

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