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Dismounted Soldier Positioning, Navigation and Timing (PNT) System Initialization

Description:

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Sensors 

OBJECTIVE: Develop and demonstrate techniques and algorithms to accomplish the initialization of Dismounted Navigation Systems while en route within a tactical vehicle permitting the transition from the vehicle to the fight completely without the need to manually calibrate or initialize the navigation system. Currently military Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers can take a few minutes to acquire satellites and the alignment of Inertial Measurement Units (IMU) up to four minutes, which must occur outside the vehicle, in plain sight, all while standing completely still. 

DESCRIPTION: This topic will enable automatic initialization and calibration of the dismounted soldier PNT system to occur within the tactical vehicle while en route, by providing techniques and algorithms that make use of information available from the vehicle's navigation, GPS, IMU, vision and other systems, and by using collaborative navigation techniques using information from other vehicles and other dismounted soldiers' navigation systems. The developed algorithms and techniques will enable continued OPTEMPO (not delaying the mission) and will not add to the size, weight, power, or cost of the soldier system. 

PHASE I: The vendor will develop a system architecture and conduct necessary tradeoff studies proposed by the vendor that contributes to the architecture and prove feasibility of the proposed approach. It is encouraged that the vendors demonstrate this technology using the CERDEC Warfighter's Integrated Navigation System (WINS) as a testbed for demonstration in Phase II. 

PHASE II: Design and build the prototype modifications to a dismounted navigation system performance for demonstration in several varied environments (benign open terrain, wooded site, urban, and in GPS challenged environments). The prototype may include the use/modification of devices already installed on the vehicle or provision of a minimal set of equipment for installation within the vehicle for use while en route to the mission location. It is encouraged that the vendors demonstrate this technology using the CERDEC Warfighter's Integrated Navigation System (WINS) as a testbed for demonstration in Phase II. 

PHASE III: The vendor will commercialize the system. Military application of this topic is directly applicable to the dismounted soldier via the Assured PNT program, subprogram Dismounted PNT. Commercial applications of this technology would be also directly applicable to First Responders (fire fighters, police, security, and other emergency units). 

REFERENCES: 

1: Vision-aided Inertial Navigation with Unknown Camera-IMU Calibration, Tue-Cuong, Dong-Si and Anastasios I. Mourikis, Dept. of Electrical Engineering, University of California, Riverside, 2012 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems

2: Vision and IMU Data Fusion: Closed-Form Solutions for Attitude, Speed, Absolute Scale, and Bias Determination, Agostino Martinelli, IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ROBOTICS, VOL. 28, NO. 1, FEBRUARY 2012

3: Patent Application, Number US8718935 B2, Navigational system initialization system, process, and arrangement

 

KEYWORDS: Positioning, Navigation, PNT, Dismounted Soldier, Inertial, GPS, Vision-aided 

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