The building behaviour of termites has previously been modelled mathematically in two dimensions. However, physical and logistic constraints were not taken into account in these models. Here, we develop and test a three-dimensional agent-based model of this process that places realistic constraints on the diffusion of pheromones, the movement of termites, and the integrity of the architecture that they construct. The following scenarios are modelled: the use of a pheromone template in the construction of a simple royal chamber, the effect of wind on this process, and the construction of covered pathways. We consider the role of the third dimension and the effect of logistic constraints on termite behaviour and, reciprocally, the structures that they create. For instance, when agents find it difficult to reach some elevated or exterior areas of the growing structure, building proceeds at a reduced rate in these areas, ultimately influencing the range of termite-buildable architectures.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of the Fourth International Workshop on Ant Colony Optimization and Swarm Intelligence (ANTS 2004)|
|Editors||M. Dorigo, M. Birattari, L. M. Blum, F. Mondada, T. Stutzle|
|Publisher||Springer Berlin Heidelberg|
|Number of pages||12|
|Publication status||Published - 2004|