UNIVERSITY OF COSTA RICA EXPLORES AEROSPACE RESEARCH WITH CLEARPATH ROBOTICS' PLATFORM

Novel Mars navigation algorithm is being validated on Husky A200

(Kitchener, ON, Canada - Oct 11, 2013) Dr. Geovanni Martinez from the University of Costa Rica has developed a novel visual odometer algorithm for accurate and more efficient tracking of Mars rover navigation. Dr. Martinez is utilizing Clear path Robotics' Husky to test and validate the algorithm that uses one-stage maximum-likelihood estimation, rather than traditional two-stage algorithms.


"It's fantastic to witness breakthrough research of this nature, and to know that it is being validated and furthered because of our mobile robotic platform," said Matt Rendall, Chief Executive Officer at Clearpath Robotics.

Dr. Martinez' team is creating a real time image acquisition system consisting of three IEEE-1394 cameras. The system is being developed under Ubuntu 12.04.2 LTS, ROS Fuerte and the programing language C". The image acquisition system corrects, in real time, the radial and tangential distortions due to the camera lens. With regard to the hardware, Dr. Martinez commented, "We like Husky A200 because the software for image acquisition, and driving the robot, was easy to implement using ROS. It saved us a lot of development time. Additionally, it is strong enough to be driven in extreme environments."

Using the algorithm, the rover's motion will be estimated by maximizing the conditional probability of the frame to frame intensity differences at the observation points. The conditional probability is computed by expanding the intensity signal by a Taylor series and neglecting the nonlinear terms. This results in the well-known optical flow constraint, as well as using a linearized 3D observation point position transformation, which transforms the 3D position of an observation point before motion into its 3D position after motion given the rover's motion parameters. Perspective projection of the observation points into the image plane and zero-mean Gaussian stochastic intensity errors at the observation points are also assumed.

About Clearpath Robotics

Clearpath Robotics, a global leader in unmanned vehicle robotics for research and development, is dedicated to automating the world's dullest, dirtiest, and deadliest jobs. The Company serves leading researchers in over 30 countries worldwide in academic, corporate and military environments. Recognizing the value of future innovation, Clearpath Robotics established PartnerBot, a grant program to support university robotics research teams, internationally. Clearpath Robotics provides robust solutions that are engineered for performance, designed for customization, and built for open source. Visit Clearpath Robotics at www.clearpathrobotics.com, follow us on Twitter @clearpathrobots or like us on Facebook

Featured Product

BitFlow Introduces 6th Generation Camera Link Frame Grabber: The Axion

BitFlow Introduces 6th Generation Camera Link Frame Grabber: The Axion

BitFlow has offered a Camera Link frame grabbers for almost 15 years. This latest offering, our 6th generation combines the power of CoaXPress with the requirements of Camera Link 2.0. Enabling a single or two camera system to operate at up to 850 MB/S per camera, the Axion-CL family is the best choice for CL frame grabber. Like the Cyton-CXP frame grabber, the Axion-CL leverages features such as the new StreamSync system, a highly optimized DMA engine, and expanded I/O capabilities that provide unprecedented flexibility in routing. There are two options available; Axion 1xE & Axion 2xE. The Axion 1xE is compatible with one base, medium, full or 80-bit camera offering PoCL, Power over Camera Link, on both connectors. The Axion 2xE is compatible with two base, medium, full or 80-bit cameras offering PoCL on both connectors for both cameras. The Axion-CL is a culmination of the continuous improvements and updates BitFlow has made to Camera Link frame grabbers.