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Feasibility Study and Performance Analysis of a Gyroless Orientation Tracker

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4 Author(s)
Benoît Huyghe ; Centre for Microsystems Technology, Department of Electrics and Information Systems (ELIS), Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium ; Pietro Salvo ; Jan Doutreloigne ; Jan Vanfleteren

Inertial orientation tracking systems commonly use three types of sensors: accelerometers, magnetometers, and gyroscopes. The angular rate signal is used to obtain a dead reckoning estimate, whereas the gravitational and local magnetic field measures allow us to apply a correction and to obtain a drift-free result. Considering the present market of inertial MEMS sensors, the current consumption of gyroscopes represents a major part of the power budget of wireless inertial sensor nodes, which should be minimized given the mobility of the application. This paper introduces an orientation tracking algorithm, based on an unscented Kalman filter, that does not require angular rate data for tracking human movements up to 450 °/s , which is a reasonable value for many applications. Since accelerometers measure other accelerations beside gravity and magnetometers are prone to magnetic disturbances, adaptive techniques are applied in order to reduce the influence on the estimations. The performance of the system is quantitatively analyzed and compared to an estimator that includes angular rate information.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement  (Volume:61 ,  Issue: 8 )