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How to do off-road navigation without a prior map in ros

asked 2021-01-20 22:22:21 -0500

SamFlynn gravatar image


Hope you all are doing well during this situation.

I am kind of new to ros and still getting used to it. So ignore my "phrasing" in certain cases.

I am in the process of making a autonomous off-road rover,which sort of looks like jackal ugv.

I am using an old gaming laptop (cpu - core i7, 16 gb ram,gtx 1050ti gpu) with ubuntu 18.04 and ros melodic.

It has the following sensors - An intel d435, An rplidar a2, An IMU(MPU- 9250), wheel encoders(Quadrature encoders).

Using the above mentioned sensors I am messages publishing in the following topics -

From encoders readings (Using an aruduino due)-



(Wrote the publishers by modifying ros examples and using serial node packages )

Using the ros_rplidar package -


and using the realsense_ros package -












Using the data from the IMU and the encoders I wrote a launch file which starts the robot_localization node.That node publishes base_link to odom transformation using an ekf.

I also wrote a subscriber node running on another arduino due, which subscribes to the /cmd_vel topic and can control the desired speed of the motors. The motor controls seems to work ok-ish after i turned the ekf. To verify I set the fixed frame to odom in rviz, then visualised pointcloud2 data and the laser scan data and drove around using teleop_joy package.

The point clouds didn't drift much.

I have looked into the rtab map package.

Now my actual question -

Is there any package to do autonomous outdoor navigation using the sensors I have without building a map beforehand rather making a map as the robot continues to explore/does mapping?I don't want to use a gps.

What are the things I should checkout.


note - Dear admins/ moderators, before flagging as duplicate or irrelevant please read the whole question. Thanks for understanding.

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answered 2021-01-21 18:10:36 -0500

Please check out explore_lite package. It allows for frontier- based exploration for autonomous navigation.

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Asked: 2021-01-20 22:22:21 -0500

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Last updated: Jan 21