Special GRASP Seminar - Elmar Mair, German Aerospace Center (DLR), "Efficient And Robust Navigation Based On Inertial And Visual Sensing"

Presenter: Elmar Mair (Homepage)

Event Dates:
  Friday November 30, 2012 from 2:00pm to 3:00pm

* Alternate Location: Levine 307 (3330 Walnut Street)*

Reliable motion estimation on resource-limited platforms is a crucial task for many applications. While insects solve this problem in an exemplary manner, mobile robots still require a bulky computation and sensor equipment to provide sufficient robustness. In this talk, I will motivate the use of an inertial-visual system as a minimal sensor concept which still allows an efficient and robust navigation. I will focus on image processing, especially efficient feature tracking and motion estimation algorithms, resulting in an algorithm which tracks several hundreds of features in a few milliseconds on low-power processing units. Such high frame-rates are of great interest if high dynamic mobile robots, like multicopters, have to be controlled. A perturbation analysis of motion estimation algorithms gives insights how the resulting accuracy depends on the aperture angle, the tracking accuracy, and the number of features. Furthermore, an algorithm is presented which accurately aligns sensors like an IMU and a camera in time and in space. Finally, I will discuss an insect-inspired navigation concept, which enables long-distance navigation even on memory limited systems. Applications will be presented like the DLR 3D-Modeler and the DLR Multicopters, where these methods are applied to.

Presenter's Biography:

Elmar Mair received the M.Sc. degree in computer science (CS) in 2007 and his Doctoral degree in CS in 2012 from the Technische Universit√§t M√ľnchen (TUM), Germany. Since 2012, he is with the Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics at the German Aerospace Center (DLR), where he works in the field of visual navigation and sensor fusion for resource limited mobile robots.