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Juergen Eckert, Falko Dressler and Reinhard German, "An Indoor Localization Framework for Four-rotor Flying Robots Using Low-power Sensor Nodes," Department of Computer Science 7, Friedrich–Alexander University of Erlangen–Nuremberg (FAU), Technical Report, 02/09, May 2009.


Flying four-rotor robots (quadrocopters) are on-board sensor controlled systems. In comparison to classical mono rotor objects (helicopters), the quadocopters can be piloted with a much lower effort. However, lateral drifts can not be compensated only referring to the build-in sensors. Nonetheless, the detection of such drifts is strongly necessary for indoor operation – without any corrections the quadrocopter would quickly cause a collision. In order to compensate the dislocation, an indoor positioning system needs to be used. In our work, we provide a framework for time-of-flight based localization systems relying on ultrasonic sensors. It is optimized for use in sensor nodes with low computational power and limited memory. Nevertheless, it offers scalability and high accuracy even with erroneous measurements. We implemented the system in our lab using ultrasound sensor that are light enough to be carried around by the flying object. Using this real-time localization system, a position controller can be implemented to maintain a given position or course.

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Juergen Eckert
Falko Dressler
Reinhard German

BibTeX reference

    author = {Eckert, Juergen and Dressler, Falko and German, Reinhard},
    title = {{An Indoor Localization Framework for Four-rotor Flying Robots Using Low-power Sensor Nodes}},
    institution = {Department of Computer Science 7, Friedrich--Alexander University of Erlangen--Nuremberg (FAU)},
    location = {Erlangen, Germany},
    month = {5},
    number = {02/09},
    type = {Technical Report},
    year = {2009},

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