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Lidar-based SLAM : Investigation of environmental changes and use of road-edges for improved positioning

  • Karlsson, Oskar
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2020
DiVA - Academic Archive On-line
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The ability to position yourself and map the surroundings is an important aspect for both civilian and military applications. Global navigation satellite systems are very popular and are widely used for positioning. This kind of system is however quite easy to disturb and therefore lacks robustness. The introduction of autonomous vehicles has accelerated the development of local positioning systems. This thesis work is done in collaboration with FOI in Linköping, using a positioning system with LIDAR and IMU sensors in a EKF-SLAM system using the GTSAM framework. The goal was to evaluate the system in different conditions and also investigate the possibility of using the road surface for positioning. Data available at FOI was used for evaluation. These data sets have a known sensor setup and matches the intended hardware. The data sets used have been gathered on three different occasions in a residential area, a country road and a forest road in sunny spring weather on two occasions and one occasion in winter conditions. To evaluate the performance several different measures were used, common ones such as looking at positioning error and RMSE, but also the number of found landmarks, the estimated distance between landmarks and the drift of the vehicle. All results pointed towards the forest road providing the best positioning, the country road the worst and the residential area in between. When comparing different weather conditions the data set from winter conditions performed the best. The difference between the two spring data sets was quite different which indicates that there may be other factors at play than just weather. A road edge detector was implemented to improve mapping and positioning. Vectors, denoted road vectors, with position and orientation were adapted to the edge points and the change between these road vectors were used in the system using GTSAM in areas with few landmarks. The clearest improvements to the drift in the vehicle direction was in the longer country area where the error was lowered with 6.4 % with increase in the error sideways and in orientation as side effects. The implemented method has a significant impact on the computational cost of the system as well as requiring precise adjustment of uncertainty to have a noticeable improvement and not worsen the overall results.

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