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ROS implementation of meta planning + FaSTrack!
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Meta-planning + Fast and Safe Tracking (FaSTrack): effectively blending fast planning methods with slower, reachability-based safety guarantees for online safe trajectory planning. Please refer to our ICRA 2018 paper for technical details.

NOTE: This repository is going under a major refactor to ensure efficiency and continuing reliability. In the meantime, please check out a much more stable version of the original FaSTrack idea here.

Repository organization

All code in this repository is written in the Robot Operating System (ROS) framework, and as such is broken up into atomic packages that implement specific functionality. The ros/ directory is the root workspace, and individual packages live inside the ros/src/ directory.


First, make sure you have ROS installed on your system. The project was developed in Jade, but it should be compatible with anything past Hydro. Please let us know if you have any compatibility issues.

Meta-FaSTrack currently depends upon the crazyflie_clean repository, which contains drivers and utilities for the HSL's Crazyflie 2.0 testbed. We intend to remove this build dependency in the future so that Tracking can be used more easily in other contexts. This will be part of a larger code reorganization/refactor.

Other dependencies:

  • Gtest -- Google's C++ unit testing library
  • Eigen -- a header-only linear algebra library for C++
  • OMPL -- an open C++ library for motion planning (recommend v1.2.1 to avoid g++5 dependency)
  • MATIO -- an open C library for MATLAB MAT file I/O
  • FLANN -- an open source library for fast (approximate) nearest neighbors

You must begin by building and sourcing the crazyflie_clean repository. Instructions may be found in that project's README. To build Meta-FaSTrack, open a terminal window and navigate to the ros/ directory. Then run:


Every time you open a new terminal, you'll have to tell ROS how to find this package. Do this by running the following command from the ros/ directory:

source devel/setup.bash

Tracking includes two demos, one software and one hardware. To run the hardware demo, you will need physical hardware access. For instructions on how to set that up, please contact us. The software demo may be launched as follows. Note that these commands must be run in different terminal windows.

roslaunch meta_planner rviz.launch
roslaunch meta_planner software_demo.launch

To run unit tests, type:

catkin_make run_tests

C++ reference materials

We attempt to adhere to the philosophy put forward in the Google C++ Style Guide. Our code is written for the reader, not the writer. We write comments liberally and use inheritance whenever it makes sense.

A few tips, tricks, and customs that you'll find throughout our code:

  • Lines of code are no longer than 80 characters.
  • The names of all member variables of a class end with an underscore, e.g. foo_.
  • When iterating through a vector, we name the index something like ii instead of just i. This makes it super easy to find and replace the iterator later.
  • We use the const specifier whenever possible.
  • We try to include optional guard statements with meaningful debug messages wherever possible. These may be toggled on/off with the ENABLE_DEBUG_MESSAGES cmake option.
  • Whenever it makes sense, we write unit tests for self-contained functionality and integration tests for dependent functions and classes. These are stored in the test/ directory.
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