Vision Impaired Wayfinding with Doppler Velocimeter

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2R44EY021412-02
Agency Tracking Number: R44EY021412
Amount: $1,473,275.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2012
Solicitation Topic Code: NEI
Solicitation Number: PA11-096
Small Business Information
6901 E. Fish Lake Road, Maple Grove, MN, -
DUNS: 140696332
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 (763) 515-5321
Business Contact
Phone: (763) 515-5321
Research Institution
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The objective of this phase II project is to use a new and innovative sensor technology called Doppler velocimetery (DV) for solving the problem of wayfinding indoors for the vision impaired. By performing a Doppler measurement of the floor movement relative to the walking person it is possible to determine the along-track velocity, the cross-track velocity and the vertical (up or down) velocity. With these measurements it is possible to accurately calculate real-time position inside a building relative to a starting point t an entrance. The significant innovation in this technology over other indoor navigation solutions for the vision impaired is that it does not require the installation of expensive infrastructure wihina building to provide wayfinding. Wayfinding through an unfamiliar building for persons who are blind or have low vision is a challenging task. The ability of a person to move freely within publi and commercial buildings is an important factor for integration and independence of these individuals within educational institutions, work and social environments. This proposed technology has the potential of making a major impact by providing a practical indoor wayfinding solution for the vision impaired.PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Current estimates suggest that there are 12 million people in the U.S who have some form of uncorrected vision impairment, with approximately 3.4 million having low vision or legal blindness. Because of demographic trends, particularly the aging of the American population, these studies project a doubling of these numbers by 2030. A system that provides independent navigation, including location determination and directions to a destination, is an important aspect in achieving full participation within occupational and educational settings.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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