Evolutionary robot swarm cooperative retrieval

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


In nature bees and leaf-cutter ants communicate to improve cooperation during food retrieval. This research aims to model communication in a swarm of autonomous robots. When food is identified robot communication is emitted within a limited range. Other robots within the range receive the communication and learn of the location and size of the food source. The simulation revealed that communication improved the rate of cooperative food retrieval tasks. However a counter-productive chain reaction can occur when robots repeat communications from other robots causing cooperation errors. This can lead to a large number of robots travelling towards the same food source at the same time. The food becomes depleted, before some robots have arrived. Several robots continue to communicate food presence, before arriving at the food source to find it gone. Nature-inspired communication can enhance swarm behaviour without requiring a central controller and may be useful in autonomous drones or vehicles.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBiomimetic and Biohybrid Systems
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)9783319959719
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jul 2018

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Cite this

Vaughan, N. (2018). Evolutionary robot swarm cooperative retrieval. In Biomimetic and Biohybrid Systems (Lecture Notes in Computer Science). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-95972-6_55