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Synthesis for Robots: Guarantees and Feedback for Robot Behavior

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      Abstract

      Robot control for tasks such as moving around obstacles or grasping objects has advanced significantly in the last few decades. However, controlling robots to perform complex tasks is still accomplished largely by highly trained programmers in a manual, time-consuming, and error-prone process that is typically validated only through extensive testing. Formal methods are mathematical techniques for reasoning about systems, their requirements, and their guarantees. Formal synthesis for robotics refers to frameworks for specifying tasks in a mathematically precise language and automatically transforming these specifications into correct-by-construction robot controllers or into a proof that the task cannot be done. Synthesis allows users to reason about the task specification rather than its implementation, reduces implementation error, and provides behavioral guarantees for the resulting controller. This article reviews the current state of formal synthesis for robotics and surveys the landscape of abstractions, specifications, and synthesis algorithms that enable it.

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           Dexter Kozen (1983)
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [1 ]Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853, USA;
            [2 ]Department of Computer Science, University of Oxford, Oxford OX1 3QD, United Kingdom;
            [3 ]San Francisco, California 94103, USA;
            Journal
            Annual Review of Control, Robotics, and Autonomous Systems
            Annu. Rev. Control Robot. Auton. Syst.
            Annual Reviews
            2573-5144
            May 28 2018
            May 28 2018
            : 1
            : 1
            : 211-236
            10.1146/annurev-control-060117-104838
            © 2018

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