This paper presents a small scale experimental setup for autonomous target tracking of a surface vessel in the presence of obstacles in rough sea states through wave, current, and wind generation in an indoor pool. The experimental setup and a method of scaling and similitude with real world scenarios are discussed. Absolute position of the agent, the target, and obstacle size and position are provided through an overhead camera by detecting color light emitting diodes installed on all objects. A sliding mode control is implemented for real time tracking control which is capable of rejecting large wave and wind disturbances. The sliding mode control signals are sent to wireless receivers on the autonomous vessel where a proportional integral speed controller maintains the commanded speed. In these experiments, the USV mission is to follow a target vessel while avoiding any obstacles that are present on its path in rough sea conditions.

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