Beacon Position and Attitude Navigation Aided by a Magnetometer

Report No. ARL-CR-650
Authors: Xu Ma; Gonzalo R. Arce
Date/Pages: June 2010; 38 pages
Abstract: Position and attitude estimations are often prerequisites for numerous applications, such as munition systems, mobile robots, and autonomous vehicles. In this report, a position and attitude parameter estimation algorithm suitable for projectiles and microaerial vehicles is developed. The algorithm uses the Earth's magnetic field and a set of fixed beacons as observation vectors. The magnetic field vector observation is obtained from a magnetometer equipped on the object. In addition, a set of angle of arrival vectors is obtained from N-emitting beacons at known ground positions. The algorithm uses iterative, nonlinear object state estimation based on observation vectors to estimate the position and attitude. Position is estimated using the resection algorithm, and attitude is estimated using a two-dimensional direction of arrival estimation algorithm. The proposed method is demonstrated to provide a full position and attitude solution while satisfying the stringent requirements of low-cost and real-time estimation suitable for gun-launched projectiles.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: June 1, 2010