Bio-Inspired Visual Navigation: From Landmarks via Bearing to Controls

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch
Army
Amount:
$100,000.00
Award Year:
2013
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
W56HZV-13-C-0008
Agency Tracking Number:
A12A-030-0402
Solicitation Year:
2012
Solicitation Topic Code:
A12a-T030
Solicitation Number:
2012.A
Small Business Information
Intelligent Automation, Inc.
15400 Calhoun Drive, Suite 400, Rockville, MD, -
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
Y
Duns:
161911532
Principal Investigator:
David Handelman
Principal Scientist
(301) 294-4490
dhandelman@i-a-i.com
Business Contact:
Mark James
Director, Contracts and Proposals
(301) 294-5221
mjames@i-a-i.com
Research Institution:
University of Pennsylvania
Kostas Daniilidis
3330 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA, 19104-
(215) 898-8549
Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
In a low-texture indoor environment, landmark-based navigation is difficult due to lack of distinctive micro-features such as SIFT and SURF. Intelligent Automation, Inc. (IAI) and GRASP Laboratory at the University of Pennsylvania propose a Bio-Inspired Visual Navigation System with the following three innovations: First, we propose a segmentation-based method to extract landmarks as closed contours in the image which are globally salient and can be detected even in the low-texture environment. We then extract view-invariant shape and topological features that can be used to recognize these landmarks from different viewpoints. Second, we transform the locations of these landmarks into visual guides for bearing-only navigation. Third, we propose an intuitive OCU user interface for the operator to specify the waypoints and destination for the UGV. Using this new type of landmarks, UGVs will be able to navigate its surrounding to the required destination with minimal inputs from the operator. The proposed solution can be integrated into Armyfs existing UGVs and would allow the UGVs to operate in non-line-of-sight teleoperation with degraded communications.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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