The need to know the precise location of individuals has become ubiquitous. Systems currently used for tracking humans and animals depend on global navigation satellite systems (GNSS eg GPS, Galileo) developed for aircraft, cars and boats, and do not provide reliable position information in conditions where GNSS is inaccurate or unavailable. For our research into locomotion of free-ranging animals, we developed a dynamically-augmented sensor system of higher integrity than GNSS alone. Currently, where GNSS is inaccurate or unavailable, most users have no alternative electronic means of navigation. Our system delivers this functionality, with the added benefits of low cost, low power requirements and small size. We propose to transform our research system into a prototype product ready for a commercial partner to take to market. It will fill the gap in the market between highly accurate but heavy and expensive navigation systems, and consumer level systems that give poor accuracy, especially in challenging GNSS conditions.
Our system combines information about speed and heading during legged locomotion from accelerometers, gyroscopes and magnetometers and uses it to independently calculate track (position/time) to improve accuracy and continuity. Where GNSS is available, our system assesses the quality of GNSS fixes and uses only reliable information to augment the localisation solution. The performance of the research system and novelty of the approach have been demonstrated through five publications in Nature.
The system can be interfaced with other technologies (eg physiological or environmental monitoring systems) and can communicate real-time position data locally or via wireless communications technology to a central control position or server.
Our dynamically augmented navigation system DYANS will have application for personal safety, military and sport, in industrial sites for personnel tracking, wildlife research and pet tracking.
Field of science
- /social sciences/economics and business/business and management/commerce
- /social sciences/social and economic geography/transport/navigation systems/satellite navigation system/global navigation satellite system
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