2008-2009: In collaboration with MIT Lincoln Laboratory, this student team developed the tracking component of a system for incident commanders to identify the location of personnel on scene in a disaster situation.
The students focused on estimating three-dimensional position through the collection and processing of sensor data as their component of this complex project. They utilized inertial navigation techniques, modifying several hardware platforms to incorporate accelerometers and gyroscopes. They developed a series of processing techniques to reduce accelerometer error in distance calculations and prototyped a pressure-sensitive sensor to indicate ground contact and facilitate a zero-velocity update technique. For future iterations, they recommend combining the physical step switch with multiple sensors on the foot and lower back.
MIT Lincoln Laboratory will build upon the students’ work and recommendations as they further develop and refine the overall tracking system.