Collision Detection for Moving Polyhedra

Unknown author (1984-10-01)

We consider the problem of moving a three dimensional solid object among polyhedral obstacles. The traditional formulation of configuration space for this problem uses three translational parameters and three angles (typically Euler angles), and the constraints between the object and obstacles involve transcendental functions. We show that a quaternion representation of rotation yields constraints which are purely algebraic in a higher-dimensional space. By simple manipulation, the constraints may be projected down into a six dimensional space with no increase in complexity. Using this formulation, we derive an efficient exact intersection test for an object which is translating and rotating among obstacles.