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Research Online: Multi-sensor SLAM key to tactical situational awareness

February 22, 2016  - By
Image: GPS World

Rescue and military applications require rapid, accurate and reliable information about unknown environments.

Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM) is a key technology for providing an accurate and reliable infrastructure-free solution for indoor situational awareness.

The researchers’ approach is to integrate a monocular camera, multiple inertial measurement units (IMUs), a barometer and a ranging sensor to obtain a solution for SLAM, as well as tactical motion information, such as detecting whether a rescue person or a soldier is running or crawling.
In their paper, the authors discuss a particle filter implementation for integrating measurements from visual perception, a foot-mounted IMU, a barometer and sonar.

The method developed is tested via experiments done in an office environment. Test setup and results are discussed in the paper.
The results obtained using the developed method are anticipated to show improvement on the accuracy and reliability of monocular SLAM compared to previous methods.

The proposed data fusion approach is expected to yield a vertical accuracy sufficient for floor identification in the test environment without utilizing Wi-Fi or other local infrastructure.

The method is anticipated to advance the state of the art in infrastructure-free SLAM solutions based on a monocular camera.

Also, the research will make significant progress towards a functioning infrastructure-free situational awareness system, which is desperately needed in the application areas in question.

By Laura Ruotsalainen, Martti Kirkko-Jaakkola, Liang Chen, Simo Gröhn, Robert Guinness, Heidi Kuusniemi, Finnish Geospatial Research Institute (FGI), National Land Survey of Finland.
Presented at ION International Technical Meeting 2016.

Miniature Atomic Clocks

“Enhanced Quantum Miniature Atomic Clock (MAC) Performance and Applications,” by Paul R. Gerry III, Will Krzewick, John Malcolmson, Microsemi.
Microsemi has been developing small form factor atomic clocks for several years. These products have smaller size, lower power and higher performance than traditional atomic clocks.

The recently enhanced Quantum Miniature Atomic Clock (MAC) is a small-size high-performance atomic clock with low power and low weight enabling a new range of applications previously not possible. The paper discusses the MAC performance, the performance grades and some of the applications that the MAC enables.

Presented at the Precise Time and Time Interval (PTTI) Meeting, co-location with ION-ITM 2016.