The autonomous navigation of an electric vehicle
A navigation and positioning system for an electric automatic guided vehicle has been designed and implemented on an industrial pallet truck. The system includes an optical sensor mounted on the vehicle, capable of recognizing special markers at a distance of 0.3m. Software implemented in a z-80 microprocessor controls the sensor, performs all data processing and contains the decision making processes necessary for the vehicle to navigate its way to its task location. A second microprocessor is used to control the vehicle's drive motors under instruction from the navigation unit, to accurately position the vehicle at its destination. The sensor reliably recognises markers at vehicle speeds up to 1ms- 1, and the system has been integrated into a multiprocessor controlled wire-guidance system and applied to a prototype vehicle.