Integrated Robot Task and Motion Planning in the Now

Unknown author (2012-06-29)

This paper provides an approach to integrating geometric motion planning with logical task planning for long-horizon tasks in domains with many objects. We propose a tight integration between the logical and geometric aspects of planning. We use a logical representation which includes entities that refer to poses, grasps, paths and regions, without the need for a priori discretization. Given this representation and some simple mechanisms for geometric inference, we characterize the pre-conditions and effects of robot actions in terms of these logical entities. We then reason about the interaction of the geometric and non-geometric aspects of our domains using the general-purpose mechanism of goal regression (also known as pre-image backchaining). We propose an aggressive mechanism for temporal hierarchical decomposition, which postpones the pre-conditions of actions to create an abstraction hierarchy that both limits the lengths of plans that need to be generated and limits the set of objects relevant to each plan. We describe an implementation of this planning method and demonstrate it in a simulated kitchen environment in which it solves problems that require approximately 100 individual pick or place operations for moving multiple objects in a complex domain.