Advanced Unattended Ground Sensor (UGS) Technologies
In border security applications for remote deployment, with no existing infrastructure or roadways as well as areas with dense foliage, a promising technology is the use of unattended ground sensors (UGS). While there has been a great deal of research and development in the areas of UGS and wireless sensor networks (WSN) over the last decade, traditional use of these technologies suffers from either high cost or poor classification performance. Toyon proposes to develop the technology for a hierarchical sensor network including wireless communications and algorithmic capabilities. At the lower level in the hierarchy are ultra low cost trigger nodes, with a single sensor modality, that are responsible for wide area persistent surveillance. At the higher level in the hierarchy are imagery nodes that are responsible for processing detections sent by the trigger nodes. Once an indication that a target may be present, an imager verifies object motion and performs classification. This sensor hierarchy will be supported by custom Toyon wireless communication solutions that meet target metrics of node lifetime and range. Open standard hardware interfaces and data formatting will be used in order to ensure straightforward integration with existing systems. While a promising technology, high cost and poor performance have limited the use of UGS for persistent surveillance in security applications. Traditional deployments of this technology have attempted to increase detection and classification performance by relying on an array of sensor inputs at each UGS. While such multi-modal sensors can improve detection performance, traditional inputs, such as acoustic, suffer from poor classification performance, particularly at significant range. In addition, the inclusion of multiple sensors will negatively impact per node cost, thus dramatically increasing overall expense when hundreds to thousands of nodes are employed. ToyonÂ¿s approach overcomes these difficulties by using a mixture of UGS nodes. For wide area surveillance we employ a single binary sensor that is only required to form detections. It is the job of a much fewer number of imagery nodes to verify target detections and perform classification. Such an architecture not only overcomes the high costs associated with wide deployment, but dramatically reduces false alarms. Terrain masking and other sources of obscuration are also handled well with the proposed architecture through node communication and cooperative tasking.
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Toyon Research Corporation
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