Maneuvering with safety guarantees using control barrier functions
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionIFAC-PapersOnLine. 2021, 54 (16), 370-377. 10.1016/j.ifacol.2021.10.118
Control barrier functions (CBFs) ensure safety of controlled dynamical systems, by restricting the control inputs to render desired sets forward invariant. In this paper we propose a dynamic guidance scheme for autonomous vehicles, using CBFs to reactively generate an obstacle-free trajectory. By implementing the safety constraints on a kinematic guidance level, rather than on a lower-level control layer, we do not need to account for uncertainty in the ship dynamics explicitly. Moreover, for ships with well-proven and resilient control systems, this is an appropriate interface level, since it does not require modification of lower-level feedback control. The guidance scheme is applied to maneuvering of underactuated ships, using a virtual vessel with unicycle dynamics to trace out a feasible trajectory.