Infoscience

Conference paper

Exploring unknown environments

We consider exploration problems where a robot has to construct a complete map of an unknown environment. We assume that the environment is modeled by a directed, strongly connected graph. The robot's task is to visit all nodes and edges of the graph using the minimum number R of edge traversals. Koutsoupias gave a lower bound for R of _O_(d2m), and Deng and Papadimitriou showed an upper bound of dO(d)m, where m is the number edges in the graph and d is the minimum number of edges that have to be added to make the graph Eulerian. We give the first sub-exponential algorithm for this exploration problem, which achieves an upper bound of d? (log d)m. We also show a matching lower bound of d_O_(log d)m for our algorithm. Additionally, we give lower bounds of 2_O_(d)m, resp. d_O_(log d)m for various other natural exploration algorithms.

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