Multi-Robot Systems
(module 4 for Elective in Robotics 2016/2017)

Prof. Giuseppe Oriolo* and Dr. Antonio Franchi**

*Dipartimento di Ingegneria Informatica, Automatica e Gestionale, Sapienza University of Rome
**LAAS-CNRS, Toulouse, France

IMPORTANT: If you plan to attend this module please inform me at This is essential for organization purposes.


The course will cover 3 weeks in April-May 2017:

1st week, 8 hrs
Tue 9/5: 14:00-18:00, A4
Thu 11/5: 14:00-18
:00, A4

2nd week, 8 hrs
Tue 16/5: 14:00-18:00, A4
Thu 18/5: 14:00-18
:00, A4

3rd week, 4 hrs
Tue 23/5: 14:00-18:00, A4

office hoursThu 14:00-16:00, room A211, DIAG, Via Ariosto 25
e-mailoriolo [at] diag [dot] uniroma1 [dot] it


This is one of the 4 modules of Elective in Robotics 2016/2017, offered to students of the Master in Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (MARR) at Sapienza University of Rome.


The course presents the basic methods for analyzing and controlling multi-robot systems, with applications to teams of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (quadrotors), Mobile Manipulators and Wheeled Mobile Robots (differential-drive).

Syllabus (preliminary)

Introduction: Examples of application of multi-robot systems, Centralized vs. decentralized architectures.

Mathematical tools: Adjacency graph and matrix, Laplacian, Connectivity and Consensus, Passivity and Lyapunov stability, Interconnection of mechanical systems.

Applications to multi-UAV systems: Formation control with time-varying topology, Formation control with connectivity maintenance, Steady-state behaviors, Bearing-based formation control.

Application to multi-WMR systems:
Cooperative mobile manipulation. Cooperative exploration of unknown environments. Mutual localization with anonymous measurements, Target localization and encircling. Heterogeneous teams.



Lecture 1
Lecture 2
Lecture 3
Lecture 4
Lecture 5
Lecture 6

Some introductory videos are on these YouTube channels: RoboticsLabSapienza and MPIRobotics.

Textbook: M. Mesbahi and M. Egerstedt, "Graph Theoretic Methods in Multiagent Systems," Princeton University Press, 2010.


Any student who has attended at least 2/3 of the lectures can pass this module by either giving a presentation on a certain topic (based on technical papers) or developing a small project (typically involving simulations). For more details, see the main page for Elective in Robotics 2016/2017.

Master Theses at the Robotics Laboratory

Master Theses on the topics studied in this course are available at the Robotics Laboratory. More information can be found here.
Questions/comments: oriolo [at] diag [dot] uniroma1 [dot] it