IEEE Systems, Man and Cybernetics Magazine - October 2020 - 15

by Jonathan Lwowski, Abhijit Majumdar,
Patrick Benavidez, John J. Prevost, and Mo Jamshidi

R

esearchers have extensively explored indoor
localization in recent years. Robotic applications often require precise positioning,
which is difficult when access to a GPS is
limited or compromised. Many of the existing approaches require either prior knowledge of the local
environment and fixed landmarks or complex and expensive hardware to achieve the necessary degree of accuracy. In this article, we examine the use of the
HTC virtual reality hardware along with
our novel approach, VIVEPOSE, to
perform indoor robotic localization. We then compare the
accuracy of our proposed
i ndoor l o c a l i z a t i o n
s y s t em to c u r r e n t
approaches that use
traditional odometry
sensor-based localization. Finally, we
present a nd de m onstrate a leader-
follower a p p r o a c h
using VIVEPOSE and
show how the HTC Vive
tracker can be successful
for indoor localization for a
robotics application.
Background
Indoor localization is necessary to enable
computing applications in areas where outdoor-only
capabilities such as GPS are unavailable or can be
denied. This capability has become important for many
use cases, such as indoor navigation and routing for people with vision impairments [1]-[4]; object detection and
tracking applications [5]-[8]; and formation control for
robotics such as unmanned aerial vehicles, unmanned
ground vehicles (UGVs), ser vice robots, industrial
robots, and so on [9]-[18].

Robots that work together cooperatively in areas with
no or limited access to GPS are such a case. In scenarios
without absolute localization, it is important for robots
to have local positioning to coordinate movements with
either other robots or humans. A large body of research
has been created to address this need. Some current
research has involved the use of common indoor radio
systems, such as Wi-Fi [19]-[21]. Since the Wi-Fi infrastructure is typically already in place, this
approach can be easy to set up and
utilize. However, these solutions are only advantageous
when there is sufficient
Wi-Fi coverage throughout
the entire operating area
[22]. In Wi-Fi-based localization schemes, a radiofrequency (RF) signal
map is built, based on a
location finger print
that is created as a vector of received signal
strength from several
transmitters. The de vice is then localized
by matching the fingerprint from a database of
known fingerprints in the
local environment. This approach
requires prior setup and knowledge of the RF
signal in the local environment.
In some areas, GPS and RF signals are not available
and many methods often require the use of special
equipment. Some of these approaches use ultrasound
deployed at several locations, such as with Cricket [23],
or employ RF identification, such as with LANDMARC
[24]. Others use multiple local features typically found in
an indoor setting. SurroundSense [25] is one such method that employs ambient sound, light, and color in addition to the Wi-Fi signal.

HTC Vive Tracker
Accuracy for Indoor Localization
Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/MSMC.2020.2969031
Date of current version: 21 October 2020

2333-942X/20©2020IEEE

O c tob e r 2020

IEEE SYSTEMS, MAN, & CYBERNETICS MAGAZINE

15



IEEE Systems, Man and Cybernetics Magazine - October 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Systems, Man and Cybernetics Magazine - October 2020

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