Available Technologies: Manufacturing

An accurate 3D indoor positioning and tracking system using visible light

Benefits3D indoor positioning

  • Accuracy to 0.06m while moving up to 1.3 m/s
  • 3D location
  • Device orientation data 
  • Easy calibration process
  • License free spectrum
  • Independence from a server
  • Use of existing lighting infrastructures given replacement of light sources by LEDs
  • Ability to track multiple fast moving objects over a large area
  • Compatible with electromagnetic-sensitive environments including hospitals, healthcare centres and aircraft.

Background

Outdoor positioning systems such as GPS performs poorly in indoor environments. Different systems have been proposed, including radio frequency (RF) systems, infrared systems and ultrasonic systems. Some of these use existing infrastructure, making them less costly, but their positioning accuracy is up to 2-5 metres. Some systems have good positioning accuracy like ultra-wideband (UWB); however, they are costly. Similarly cellular-based positioning systems estimate a user's position from the base station raising privacy concerns for users. 

Technology

Based on the measured light intensity from the photodetectors, the receiver’s position and orientation can be calculated to within 0.0025s.  Closed-form expressions making the system faster and more robust compared with other systems. The deployment process involves replacing light sources with LEDs. Neither server nor extra infrastructure is required to control the LEDs.

Potential markets

Light based indoor positioning systems can be added to the suite of systems used in robotic delivery and warehouse tracking systems to increase accuracy for certain tasks and locations. Spatial data can also be used to track in-store consumer habits to better market to customers.

There is also the opportunity to provide accurate positions of moving objects or persons in augmented reality. 

IP status

PCT Patent Application No. PCT/AU2015/000745.

Partnering opportunities

UniSA Ventures is seeking industry partners in the field of indoor positioning to further develop the technology with the object of licensing.

Lead Inventor

  • Dr Siu Wai Ho, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Telecommunications Research

Commercial lead