This paper describes a study in evolutionary robotics conducted completely in hardware without using simulations. The experiments employ on-line evolution, where robot controllers evolve on-the-fly in the robots’ environment as the robots perform their tasks. The main issue we consider is the feasibility of tackling a non-trivial task in a realistic timeframe. In particular, we investigate whether a population of six robots can evolve foraging behaviour in one hour. The experiments demonstrate that this is possible and they also shed light on some of the important features of our evolutionary system. Further to the specific results we also advocate the system itself. It provides an example of a replicable and affordable experimental set-up for other researches to engage in research into on-line evolution in a population of real robots.
Bibliographical noteProceedings title: Applications of Evolutionary Computation
Place of publication: Porto
Editors: G. Squillero, P. Burelli