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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2014, Article ID 267307, 9 pages
Research Article

Neural Network Observer-Based Finite-Time Formation Control of Mobile Robots

1School of Electrical Engineering, Guangdong Mechanical and Electrical College, Guangzhou 510550, China
2Key Laboratory of Autonomous Systems and Networked Control, Ministry of Education, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China
3School of Electrical and Information Engineering, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212013, China
4School of Biomedical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117575

Received 22 March 2014; Accepted 18 June 2014; Published 7 July 2014

Academic Editor: Simin Yu

Copyright © 2014 Caihong Zhang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper addresses the leader-following formation problem of nonholonomic mobile robots. In the formation, only the pose (i.e., the position and direction angle) of the leader robot can be obtained by the follower. First, the leader-following formation is transformed into special trajectory tracking. And then, a neural network (NN) finite-time observer of the follower robot is designed to estimate the dynamics of the leader robot. Finally, finite-time formation control laws are developed for the follower robot to track the leader robot in the desired separation and bearing in finite time. The effectiveness of the proposed NN finite-time observer and the formation control laws are illustrated by both qualitative analysis and simulation results.