Implementation of Leader-Follower Formation Control of a Team of Nonholonomic Mobile Robots

Augie Widyotriatmo, Endra Joelianto, Agung Prasdianto, Hafidz Bahtiar, Yul Yunazwin Nazaruddin


A control method for a team of multiple mobile robots performing leader-follower formation by implementing computing, communication, and control technology is considered. The strategy expands the role of global coordinator system and controllers of multiple robots system. The global coordinator system creates no-collision trajectories of the virtual leader which is the virtual leader for all vehicles, sub-virtual leaders which are the virtual leader for pertinent followers, and virtual followers. The global coordinator system also implements role assignment algorithm to allocate the role of mobile robots in the formation. The controllers of the individual mobile robots have a task to track the assigned trajectories and also to avoid collision among the mobile robots using the artificial potential field algorithm. The proposed method is tested by experiments of three mobile robots performing leader-follower formation with the shape of a triangle. The experimental results show the robustness of formation of mobile robots even if the leader is manually moved to the arbitrary location, and so that the role of a leader is taken by the nearest mobile robot to the virtual leader.


Leader-follower, formation, nonholonomic, trajectory control, collision avoidance, multiple mobile robots.

Full Text:



Barrios C., Motai Y. (2011); Improving Estimation of Vehicle's Trajectory Using the Latest Global Positioning System With Kalman Filtering, IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement, 60(12), 3747-3755, 2011.

Beard R.W., Lawton J., Hadaegh F.Y. (2001), A Coordination Architecture for Spacecraft Formation Control, IEEE Transactions on Control Systems and Technology, 9(6): 777-790, 2001.

van den Broek T. H. A., van deWouw N., Nijmeijer H. (2009); Formation Control of Unicycle Mobile Robots: a Virtual Structure Approach, Proceedings of the 48th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control and the 28th Chinese Control Conference, 8328-8333, 2009.

Cho B.-S., Moon W.-S., Seo W.-J., Baek K.-R. (2011); A Dead Reckoning Localization System for Mobile Robots using Inertial Sensors and Wheel Revolution Encoding, Journal of Mechanical Science and Technology, 25(11), 2907-2917, 2011.

Do K. D. (2007); Bounded Controllers for Decentralized Formation Control of Mobile Robots with Limited Sensing, International Journal of Computers Communications & Control, 2(4), 340-354, 2007.

Dong W., Farrell J.A. (2008); Cooperative Control of Multiple Nonholonomic Mobile Agents, IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control, 53(6), 1434-1448, 2008.

Joelianto E.; Sagala A. (2012); Optimal Control Design for Flocking of Multi-Agent using Swarm Intelligence, Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Control, Systems and Industrial Informatics (ICCSII), Bandung-Indonesia, 75-80, 2012.

Khatib, O. (1986). Real-Time Obstacle Avoidance for Manipulator and Mobile Robots, International Journal of Robotics Research, 5(1), 90-98, 1986.

Lewis M. A.; Tan K.H. (1997); High Precision Formation Control of Mobile Robots using Virtual Structures, Autonomous Robots, 4(4), 387-403, 1997.

Nguyen D.B., Do K.D. (2006); Formation Control of Mobile Robots, International Journal of Computers Communications & Control, 1(3), 41-59, 2006.

Mesbahi M., Egerstedt M. (2010); Graph Theoretic Methods in Multiagent Networks, Princeton University Press, 2010.

Murray R. M., Sastry S.S. (1993); Nonholonomic Motion Planning: Steering Using Sinusoids, IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control, 38(5), 700-716, 1993.

Oh K.-K., Park, M.-C., Ahn H.-S. (2015); A Survey of Multi-Agent Formation Control, Automatica, 53(3), 424-440, 2015.

Olfati-Saber R., Fax A., Murray R.M. (2007); Consensus and Cooperation in Networked Multi-Agent Systems, Proceedings of the IEEE, 95(1), 215-233, 2007.

Ren W., Atkins E. (2007); Distributed Multi-Vehicle Coordinated Control Via Local Information Exchange, International Journal of Robust Nonlinear Systems, 17(10-11), 1002-1033, 2007.

Ren W., Cao Y. (2010); Distributed Coordination of Multi-Agent Networks: Emergent Prob- lems, Models, and Issues, Springer, 2010.

Rimon E., Koditschek D.E. (1992); Exact Robot Navigation using Artificial Potential Functions, IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation, 8(5), 501-518, 1992.

Samson C. (1995); Control of Chained Systems Application to Path Following and Time- Varying Point Stabilization of Mobile Robots, IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control, 40(1), 64-77, 1995.

Wang K., Liu Y., Li L. (2014); Visual Servoing Trajectory Tracking of Nonholonomic Mobile Robots Without Direct Position Measurement, IEEE Transactions on Robotics, 30(4), 1026- 1035, 2014.

Widyotriatmo A., Hong K.-S. (2015); Configuration Control of an Autonomous Vehicle under Nonholonomic and Field-of-View Constraints, International Journal of Imaging and Robotics, 15(3), 126-139, 2014.

Widyotriatmo A., Hong K.-S. (2012); Switching Algorithm for Robust Configuration Control of a Wheeled Vehicle, Control Engineering Practice, 20(3), 315-325, 2012.

Widyotriatmo A., Hong K.-S., Prayudhi L. H. (2010); Robust Stabilization of a Wheeled Vehicle: Hybrid Feedback Control Design and Experimental Validation, Journal of Mechanical Science and Technology, 24(2), 513-520, 2010.

Widyotriatmo A., Pamosoaji A.K., Hong K.-S. (2013); Control Architecture of an Autonomous Material Handling Vehicle, International Journal of Artificial Intelligent, 10(13S), 139-153, 2013.

Widyotriatmo A., Hong B., Hong K.-S. (2009); Predictive Navigation of an Autonomous Vehicle with Nonholonomic and Minimum Turning Radius Constraints, Journal of Mechanical Science and Technology, 23(2): 381-388, 2009.

Widyotriatmo A., Hong K.-S. (2011); Navigation Function-Based Control of Multiple Wheeled Vehicles, IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics, 58(5), 1896-1906, 2011.

Yue M., Wang S., Yang X. (2014); Backstepping-Based Robust Control for WMR with A Boundary in Prior for the Uncertain Rolling Resistance, International Journal of Computers Communications & Control, 9(3), 348-355, 2014


Copyright (c) 2017 Augie Widyotriatmo, Endra Joelianto, Agung Prasdianto, Hafidz Bahtiar, Yul Yunazwin Nazaruddin

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

CC-BY-NC  License for Website User

Articles published in IJCCC user license are protected by copyright.

Users can access, download, copy, translate the IJCCC articles for non-commercial purposes provided that users, but cannot redistribute, display or adapt:

  • Cite the article using an appropriate bibliographic citation: author(s), article title, journal, volume, issue, page numbers, year of publication, DOI, and the link to the definitive published version on IJCCC website;
  • Maintain the integrity of the IJCCC article;
  • Retain the copyright notices and links to these terms and conditions so it is clear to other users what can and what cannot be done with the  article;
  • Ensure that, for any content in the IJCCC article that is identified as belonging to a third party, any re-use complies with the copyright policies of that third party;
  • Any translations must prominently display the statement: "This is an unofficial translation of an article that appeared in IJCCC. Agora University  has not endorsed this translation."

This is a non commercial license where the use of published articles for commercial purposes is forbiden. 

Commercial purposes include: 

  • Copying or downloading IJCCC articles, or linking to such postings, for further redistribution, sale or licensing, for a fee;
  • Copying, downloading or posting by a site or service that incorporates advertising with such content;
  • The inclusion or incorporation of article content in other works or services (other than normal quotations with an appropriate citation) that is then available for sale or licensing, for a fee;
  • Use of IJCCC articles or article content (other than normal quotations with appropriate citation) by for-profit organizations for promotional purposes, whether for a fee or otherwise;
  • Use for the purposes of monetary reward by means of sale, resale, license, loan, transfer or other form of commercial exploitation;

    The licensor cannot revoke these freedoms as long as you follow the license terms.

[End of CC-BY-NC  License for Website User]

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF COMPUTERS COMMUNICATIONS & CONTROL (IJCCC), With Emphasis on the Integration of Three Technologies (C & C & C),  ISSN 1841-9836.

IJCCC was founded in 2006,  at Agora University, by  Ioan DZITAC (A. Editor-in-Chief),  Florin Gheorghe FILIP (Editor-in-Chief), and  Misu-Jan MANOLESCU (Managing Editor).

This journal is a member of, and subscribes to the principles of, the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE).

Ioan  DZITAC (A. Editor-in-Chief) at COPE European Seminar, Bruxelles, 2015:

IJCCC is covered/indexed/abstracted in Science Citation Index Expanded (since vol.1(S),  2006). IF=1.374 in JCR2016.

IJCCC is indexed in Scopus from 2008 (SNIP2016 = 0.701, SJR2016 =0.319):

Nomination by Elsevier for Journal Excellence Award Romania 2015 (SNIP2014 = 1.029): Elsevier/ Scopus

IJCCC was nominated by Elsevier for Journal Excellence Award - "Scopus Awards Romania 2015" (SNIP2014 = 1.029).

IJCCC is in Top 3 of 157 Romanian journals indexed by Scopus (in all fields) and No.1 in Computer Science field by Elsevier/ Scopus.