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Acoustic source localization in distributed sensor networks

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4 Author(s)
Ajdler, T. ; Ecole Polytech. Fed. de Lausanne, Switzerland ; Kozintsev, I. ; Lienhart, R. ; Vetterli, M.

This paper studies the problem of sound source localization in a distributed wireless sensor network formed by mobile general purpose computing and communication devices with audio I/O capabilities. In contrast to well understood localization methods based on dedicated microphone arrays, in our setting sound localization is performed using a sparse array of arbitrary placed sensors (in a typical scenario, localization is performed by several laptops/PDAs co-located in a room). Therefore any far-field assumptions are no longer valid in this situation. Additionally, localization algorithm's performance is affected by uncertainties in sensor position and errors in A/D synchronization. The proposed source localization algorithm consists of two steps. In the first step, time differences of arrivals (TDOAs) are estimated for the microphone pairs, and in the second step the maximum likelihood (ML) estimation for the source position is performed. We evaluate the Cramer-Rao bound (CRB) on the variance of the location estimation and compare it with simulations and experimental results. We also discuss the effects of distributed array geometry and errors in sensor positions on the performance of the localization algorithm. The performances of the system are likely to be limited by errors in sensor locations and increase when the microphones have a large aperture with respect to the source.

Published in:

Signals, Systems and Computers, 2004. Conference Record of the Thirty-Eighth Asilomar Conference on  (Volume:2 )

Date of Conference:

7-10 Nov. 2004