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Optimal Path Planning and Sensor Placement for Mobile Target Detection

Brian Anderson (ANU and NICTA)


DATE: 2014-10-10
TIME: 11:00:00 - 12:00:00
LOCATION: RSISE Seminar Room, ground floor, building 115, cnr. North and Daley Roads, ANU
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This talk describes an applications problem originating from Australiaas Defence Science and Technology Organization, in which a variety of modeling and optimization issues present themselves. For a flying military vehicle, in many scenarios avoiding detection is a key objective. Given a field of heterogeneous detectors such as radars in fixed positions, flying the least probability of detection path through the field of detectors is a fundamental strategy. Most previous optimization methods for this problem have sought to minimize cumulative radar exposure; in contrast, we consider a formulation that directly minimizes the probability of detection. We show how a variational dynamic programming method can be applied to this model to allow one to find a locally optimal path with low computational complexity, and then extend the idea in two directions. First, using homotopy methods, we consider how the vehicle can cope with adjustments to the detector field, resulting from introduction or removal of detectors, or changes of sensitivity. Then we consider the effect of taking Doppler measurements into account. This poses a challenge both in terms of modeling, and an increase in the dimension of the problem.

From the point of view of those seeking to detect the vehicle, the positioning of sensor assets is important. The talk considers how this can be done when the vehicle whose detection is desired optimizes its path. A relaxed version of the positioning problem can be formulated as a convex optimization problem and used to determine optimal or close-to-optimal detector positions.

Professor Anderson was born in Sydney, Australia. He took his undergraduate degrees in Mathematics and Electrical Engineering at Sydney University, and his doctoral degree in Electrical Engineering at Stanford University.

He worked in industry in the United States and at Stanford University before serving as Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Newcastle, Australia from 1967 through 1981. At that time, he took up a post as Professor and Head of the Department of Systems Engineering at the Australian National University in Canberra, where he was Director of the Research School of Information Sciences and Engineering from 1994 to 2002. For approximately one year to May 2003, he was the inaugural CEO of the newly formed National ICT Australia, established by the Australian Government through the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts and the Australian Research Council under the Information and Communication Technologies Centre of Excellence program. From May 2003 to June 2006, he served as Chief Scientist of NICTA. He has held many visiting appointments in the United States, Europe and Asia, including the University of California, Berkeley, Stanford University, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and Tokyo Institute of Technology.

Professor Anderson has served as a member of a number of government bodies, including the Australian Science and Technology Council and the Prime Minister's Science, Engineering and Innovation Council. He was also a member of the Board of Cochlear Limited, the world's major supplier of cochlear implants from 1995 to 2005. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, and an Honorary Fellow of the Institution of Engineers, Australia. In 1989, he became a Fellow of the Royal Society, London, and in 2002 a Foreign Member of the US National Academy of Engineering. He holds honorary doctorates of the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, and the Universities of Sydney, Melbourne, New South Wales and Newcastle, together with the University of Technology, Sydney. He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 1993 and awarded the Centennial Medal in 2001.

He was President of the International Federation of Automatic Control for the triennium 1990 to 1993, and served as President of the Australian Academy of Science for four years from 1998 to 2002.

His research interests have included many contributions in the area of circuits, signal processing and control, and currently his work focuses on distributed control of multiagent systems, sensor network localization, and econometric modelling.

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