Coalition Formation in Multi-Agent Systems Based on Bottlenose Dolphin Alliances
Haque, Musad A.
Egerstedt, Magnus B.
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Male bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus, found off the coast of Western Australia and Florida, often form varied levels of alliances to capture females and increase their chances of mating. One such alliance, known as the first-order alliance, consists of 2-3 dolphins that share a very strong "bond", formally known as the Association coefficient in behavioral biology. We formalize factors that affect the coefficient, and analyze their influence in building alliances in the context of multi-agent coalition formation. We produce a model of the first-order alliance as a hybrid automaton, based solely on local information evolving over spatially defined interaction topologies, where the model is expressive enough to capture the biological phenomenon, yet simple enough to derive results through analysis.