The Project


The project is a major part of the course TSRT10 at Linköping University at the Department of Electrical Engineering (ISY). The group contains a mix of mechanical and electrical engineering students.


This is a project that has been ongoing since 2009. The long term objective is to develop a minesweeper system. A lot of development has been a continuation from previous work. However there are also new additions. The two biggest ones in comparison to previous years is the implementation of a rotating LiDAR and setting up a quadcopter to communicate with the already existing platform.


The project is made in collaboration with Saab Dynamics.


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The system

Combining the ground vehicle Balrog with the UAV Sauron in the mission to detect mines.

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A SLAM algorithm is used to simultaneously estimate Balrog’s position and map its surroundings. The OpenKarto ROS package is utilized, which is an optimization based algorithm. It takes as input sensor data from a rotating LiDAR and wheel encoders.

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The navigation module has three different modes: mapping, covering and disarming. The mapping mode explores and map the assigned area. The covering mode covers all regions and search the mapped area for mines. Finally, in the disarming mode Balrog visits all the mines detected in mapping and covering for disarming.

The localization module is responsible for detecting Balrog and to estimate Sauron’s position and orientation with respect to Balrog. This was achieved by mounting an AprilTag on Balrog and modifying an external AprilTag ROS package.

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To be able to track the moving Balrog, four time discrete PID controllers were implemented that control the height, pitch, roll and yaw of Sauron. Input to these controllers are the position and orientation of Sauron relative to Balrog, as outputted by the localization module.