Distributed formation control for collaborative tracking of manifolds in flows

Matthew Michini, Hossein Rastgoftar, M. Ani Hsieh, Suhada Jayasuriya

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

10 Scopus citations


We address the development of a distributed control strategy for tracking Lagrangian coherent structures (LCS) in a geophysical fluid environment like the ocean. LCS are time-dependent structures that divide the flow into dynamically distinct regions and are important because they enable the estimation of the underlying geophysical fluid dynamics. In this work, we present a distributed formation control strategy designed to track stable and unstable manifolds. We build on our existing work and present an N-robot leader-follower tracking strategy that relies solely on local sensing, prediction, and correction. Our approach treats the N-robot team as a deformable body where distributed formation control for tracking coherent structures and manifolds is achieved using a sequence of homogeneous maps. We discuss the theoretical guarantees of the proposed strategy and validate it in simulation on static flows as well as the time-dependent model of a wind-driven double-gyre often seen in the ocean.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2014 American Control Conference, ACC 2014
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9781479932726
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
Event2014 American Control Conference, ACC 2014 - Portland, OR, United States
Duration: Jun 4 2014Jun 6 2014

Publication series

NameProceedings of the American Control Conference
ISSN (Print)0743-1619


Other2014 American Control Conference, ACC 2014
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityPortland, OR


  • (Under)water vehicles
  • Autonomous systems
  • Cooperative control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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