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The Mesh Tools Package -- Introducing Annotated 3D Triangle Maps in ROS

Sebastian Pütz; Thomas Wiemann; Joachim Hertzberg
In: Karsten Berns; Maria Gini; Jun Ota (Hrsg.). Robotics and Autonomous Systems (RAS), Vol. 138, Page 103688, Elsevier, 4/2021.


Triangle mesh maps for robotic applications are becoming increasingly popular, but were not yet effectively supported in the Robot Operating System (ROS). We introduce the Mesh Tools package consisting of message definitions, RViz plugins and tools, as well as a persistence layer to store such maps. These tools make annotated triangle maps available in ROS and allow to publish, edit and inspect such maps within the existing ROS software stack. The persistence layer efficiently loads and stores large mesh maps. The proposed plugins and tools enable the visualization and validation of the whole layered map and its properties to allow fluid interaction. We demonstrate the seamless integration of our tools in two application areas as a proof-of-concept: Labeling of triangle clusters for semantic mapping and robot navigation on triangle meshes in rough terrain outdoor environments by integrating our tools into an existing navigation stack.