Robotics-Based Location Sensing based on Wireless Ethernet
Bekris, Kostas E.
Kavraki, Lydia E.
Ladd, Andrew M.
Wallach, Dan S.
A key subproblem in the construction of location-aware systems is the determination of the position of a mobile device. This paper describes the design, implementation and analysis of a system for determining position from measured RF signal strengths in the IEEE 802.11b wireless Ethernet network. Previous approaches in the location-aware field with RF signals have been severely hampered by non-linearity, noise and complex correlations due to multi-path effects, interference and absorption. The design of our system begins with the observation that determining position from complex, noisy and non-linear signals is a well-studied problem in the field of robotics. Using only off-the-shelf hardware, we achieve robust position estimation to within a meter in our experimental context and after adequate training of our system. Also, we can coarsely determine our orientation and can track our position as we move. By applying recent advances in probabilistic inference of position and sensor fusion from noisy signals, we show that the RF emissions from base stations as measured by off-the-shelf wireless Ethernet cards are sufficiently rich in information to permit a mobile device to reliable track its location.