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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2017, Article ID 7619086, 14 pages
Research Article

Formation Control of Unmanned Surface Vehicles with Sensing Constraints Using Exponential Remapping Method

1State Key Laboratory of Ocean Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
2Collaborative Innovation Center for Advanced Ship and Deep-Sea Exploration, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Jing-Yang Liu; nc.ude.utjs@uil_yj

Received 18 May 2017; Revised 6 August 2017; Accepted 14 August 2017; Published 13 September 2017

Academic Editor: Jean Jacques Loiseau

Copyright © 2017 Jian Wang 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 presents a formation control strategy for unmanned surface vehicles (USVs) with sensing constraints moving in a leader-follower formation. Each USV is assumed to be equipped with a vision-based sensor, which is able to get the line-of-sight (LOS) range and bearing information. Most existing literature assumes that the USVs in formation control are with no sensing limitations or with 360-degree sensing fields; however, in our research, the vision-based sensor’s capability is restricted due to limited Field of View (FOV) and visual range. We consider that each USV in formation problem is equipped with a sector-like sensing field sensor for the leader-follower formation in two-dimensional space. The formation controller is developed by employing backstepping control technique and exponential remapping. The backstepping controller is designed to stabilize the triangular formation of three USVs, and the proposed exponential remapping method is to deal with the sector-like sensing constraint problem. Comparative analysis with three exponential remapping methods using numerical simulations is given to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.