୯ҥᆵεᏢႝᐒၗૻᏢଣၗૻπำᏢس ᅺγፕЎ

### Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering College of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

### National Taiwan University Master Thesis

ၮҔൂڀΒᆢLIDARӧҥᡏᕉნύۓՏᆶࡌӦკ 3D Localization and Mapping Using One 2D LIDAR

ᝠ

Dopfer Andreas

Ꮴ௲ȅЦണඵ റγ Advisor: Chieh-Chih Wang, Ph.D.

ύ҇୯ ΐΜΖ ԃ Ζ Д August, 2009

**Acknowledgements**

## W

^{HEN}I ﬁrst came to Taiwan almost four years ago I would have never dreamed that I am going to spend such a large and important part of my life here. Now looking back I am very glad that I can say with conﬁdence that the decision to stay in Taiwan and to pursue a Master degree at National Taiwan University was best for me. There are many people I would like to thank for making this thesis possible, for helping and supporting me along my way over the last years.

First I would like to thank Bob Wang for being a great advisor. He helped me with many great ideas and fruitful discussions, and I want to thank him as well for all his sup- port and encouragement in countless academic as well as personal matters over the last two years. Much gratitude goes to all members of the Perception and Learning lab for al- lowing me to become one of them, despite the cultural differences and the language barrier.

In particular I want to thank Jeff Chen, Der-Yeuan Yu for all their help in many occasions.

Also I want to thank Casey, Any, Jimmy, Jim, Chen-Han, Yu-Chun, Zhen-Yu, Chung-Han, Shao-Chen, Hao-Hsueh, and Alan for being reliable and very helpful colleagues during my time in the lab. I also want to thank Kuo-Hwei, Stanley, Leo, Atwood, Wei-Chi as well as Yi-Kuang and Chi-Hao who are previous members of the lab and have been a great support as well.

I specially want to thank my friends Hao-Ju Pang, Kathy Ko and Thijs Velema for all their support, encouragement and help throughout my last years in Taiwan. My friend and roommate Christian Ivancsits also has to be mentioned. I want to thank him for many long and rich discussions about our research and robotics in general. Also want to thank my long-standing friend Michale Eckl who was a great support during countless coffee-breaks and long discussions.

Last but not least I have to thank my family for all the support they gave me through this period of my life. Even though I know they would love to have me around them, they still supported my decisions to study far away from home. I also want to mention all my friends in Austria who stayed close to me over the years, and welcome me back like I have never left whenever I get home.

Andreas Dopfer, Taipei, July 19^{th}, 2009

## 摘要

在這篇論文中，我們提出一種只利用一台二維 LIDAR 讓機器人在三維空間 中做定位和建立三維空間資訊的方法。我們同時利用事前的環境知識和機器人本 人的運動來完成這件事。我們主要是達成一種在取得三維空間資訊的同時，也提 供了比得上使用水平二維 LIDAR 定位效能的方法。

**3D LOCALIZATION AND MAPPING USING** **ONE 2D LIDAR**

**Andreas Dopfer**

Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering National Taiwan University

Taipei, Taiwan

August 2009

Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of

Master of Science

**Advisor:**

**Chieh-Chih Wang**
Thesis Committee:

Han-Pang Huang Ta-Te Lin Shih-Chung Kang

Dc OPFER, ANDREAS, 2009

**ABSTRACT**

### M

^{UCH}work on localization and mapping using LIDAR has been done in mo- bile robotics. While earlier work was done only in the two dimensional do- main, a recent shift towards three dimensional localization and mapping us- ing laser rangefinder can be seen. Three dimensional representations allow a more accurate modeling of the real world, allowing more sophisticated path planning and leading to better obstacle avoidance. Also the performance of localization can be improved, and three dimensional data allows better object recognition than 2D data.

Techniques capturing 3D data involve either multiple 2D LIDARS, one 2D LIDAR that is nodded or rotated using an external actuator together with highly accurate orientation sensing and synchronization, or an integrated, expensive 3D scanning system. In this thesis we propose a technique to capture 3D data only using one 2D LIDAR. To do so the robots motion is utilized together with reasonable assumptions. It is assumed that the ground the robot is moving on is flat and visible in the scan, that the sensors height is known and that the environment has vertical structures.

First an initial calibration procedure using a camera together with the LIDAR is per- formed to reveal the extrinsic parameters between robot and the sensor. The localization problem is divided into two steps. The LIDARs sensing plane is tilted away from the robots direction of motion towards the floor (or another known flat structure in the environment).

The detection of the floor allows to estimate the angular orientation of the sensor in two dimensions. Using these estimates the range data can be transformed, so that known meth- ods to estimate the missing parameters of the full LIDAR pose can be adopted. Being able to accurately estimate the three dimensional displacement between two consecutive scans allows to build an accurate three dimensional map of the environment.

**TABLE OF CONTENTS**

ABSTRACT . . . ii

LIST OF FIGURES . . . v

CHAPTER 1. Introduction . . . 1

Localization . . . 1

Mapping . . . 2

Thesis objective . . . 2

Overview . . . 2

CHAPTER 2. Related Work . . . 3

2.1. Mapping . . . 3

2.2. Mapping in 3D . . . 4

CHAPTER 3. Foundations . . . 6

3.1. LIDAR . . . 6

3.2. Raw Scan Processing . . . 8

3.2.1. Linear Least Square Line fitting . . . 8

3.2.2. Line splitting . . . 8

3.3. Iterative Closest Point (ICP) Algorithm . . . 10

3.3.1. Improvements over the Naive Implementation . . . 11

3.4. Clustering . . . 12

3.5. LIDAR calibration . . . 13

3.5.1. Extrinsic Camera - LIDAR calibration . . . 13

3.5.2. Calibrating the LIDAR’s position . . . 17

CHAPTER 4. 3D Localization and Mapping using one 2D LIDAR . . . 18

4.1. Assumptions . . . 18

4.2. Estimating the Orientation . . . 20

4.2.1. Identifying the ground line . . . 20

4.2.2. Selection Issues . . . 21

4.2.3. Calculating Pitch and Roll . . . 22

4.3. Estimating the Robot Motion . . . 23

4.3.1. Scan Projection . . . 23

4.3.2. Scan Matching Challenges . . . 24

4.3.3. Constant Velocity Motion Model . . . 26

4.3.4. Sampling based Approach . . . 26

TABLE OF CONTENTS

4.4. Uncertainty Modeling . . . 28

4.4.1. Uncertainty Comparison . . . 28

CHAPTER 5. Experimental Results . . . 30

5.1. Hardware . . . 30

5.1.1. Extrinsic camera-LIDAR calibration . . . 32

5.1.2. LIDAR calibration . . . 32

5.2. Software Implementation . . . 33

5.3. 3D-map of the CSIE Building: Fourth floor . . . 33

5.4. 3D-map of the CSIE Building: First floor . . . 38

5.4.1. Performance . . . 42

5.4.2. Issues . . . 42

5.5. Gridmaps . . . 44

CHAPTER 6. Conclusion . . . 45

6.1. Conclusion . . . 45

6.2. Future Work . . . 45

BIBLIOGRAPHY . . . 47

**LIST OF FIGURES**

3.1 LIDAR sensors . . . 6

3.2 Example of scans taken with a SICK LMS 291 . . . 7

3.3 Line fitting and line splitting . . . 9

3.4 Overview of the calibration procedure . . . 13

3.5 Calibration target intersecting with laser slice plane . . . 15

3.6 Sample pair of camera image and laserscan . . . 15

3.7 Camera image after calibration procedure with the laser data projected on the image . . . 16

3.8 Calibrating camera with respect to the ground . . . 17

4.1 Segmented scan with detected groundline . . . 21

4.2 Pitch and roll angles . . . 22

4.3 Example of a horizontal and projected scan . . . 25

4.4 Sampling based results with no ambiguities . . . 27

4.5 Sampling based results with ambiguities . . . 27

4.6 Uncertainty comparision between tilted and horizontal scan data . . . 29

5.1 Modified PAL 1 robot . . . 31

5.2 Camera-LIDAR calibration results . . . 32

5.3 3D map of the 4th floor, CSIE building . . . 34

5.4 Fourth Floor CSIE building, loop . . . 35

5.5 Details from the 3D map generated in the fourth floor of the CSIE building . . . . 36

5.6 Comparisons between tilted and horizontal LIDAR . . . 37

5.7 3D model of the first floor, CSIE building . . . 38

5.8 Detail of the 3D model, first floor, CSIE building . . . 39

5.9 Details from the 3D map generated in the first floor of the CSIE building . . . 41

5.10Comparisons between tilted and horizontal LIDAR . . . 43

5.11Comparison of grid maps generated by the tilted and horizontal LIDAR . . . 44

**CHAPTER 1**

**Introduction**

## T

^{O}allow a mobile robot safe and efficient operation within the real world, their perception needs to answer two fundamental questions. One of them is: ”How does the world (around me) look like?”. To interact with the phys- ical world a robot needs knowledge about the environment. In which form this information is required relates strongly to the robots purpose. For a robot that moves in a static environment it might be sufficient to know which areas it can traverse, but for a robot that is expected to do more sophisticated tasks such as interacting with the environ- ment a higher level representation of the environment is required. The problem of deriving a world representation from sensors readings is called mapping.

The other question to answer is: ”Where am I?”. Just to know how the environment looks like is not enough. A robot also needs to know how its location in this environment and how it is located with respect to a certain object. The problem of finding the robots location is called localization. The sensors used for both can be cameras, sonars, laser rangefinder or any other sensor that can sense relevant information of the environment.

In this thesis we focus on Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) sensors which use a laser beam to sense the distance to objects. The characteristics of this class of sensors will be discussed in section 3.1.

**Localization**

When talking about localization we can distinguish two different ways. One is to localize the robot given that a map of the environment is given. If the initial location in the map is known the task gets easier, since the region within which the robot can be is

OVERVIEW

bounded. If no initial location is given the problem get harder because more possible lo- cations where the robot can be exist. The other way that is also named as localization is to keep track of the robot’s subsequent movement. Rather than using a map of the whole environment, the previous sensor reading is used together with the current reading to es- timate the change of position. Adding up these position changes localizes the robot with respect to its starting position. Following the taxonomy of (Thrun et al., 2005) this category of localization problems is called position tracking.

**Mapping**

Mapping is the problem of deriving a world representation given sensor measure- ments. Many possible map representations have been discussed like grid based approaches, topological ones or direct approaches that use the raw measurements in some sense. Given the position from which the sensor reading was recorded the reading can be integrated in the map in several ways. Caution has to be taken since in real world applications neither the sensor reading nor the position will be perfectly known.

**Thesis objective**

This thesis describes a method to localize a robot in 3D and generate a map of its en- vironment using only one 2D LIDAR. To do so prior knowledge about the environment is utilized together with the robots motion. This work aims to reach comparable localization performance to 2D method while being able to capture richer 3D information.

**Overview**

Chapter 2 of this thesis will give an overview about existing mapping and localiza- tion techniques and will discuss different 3D mapping methods. Chapter 3 will introduce different methods and algorithms that are used to complete the work of this thesis. Algo- rithms to process the raw LIDAR data will be presented together with a calibration method to find the extrinsic parameters between a camera and a laser rangefinder which will be used to calibrate the LIDAR position and orientation. Chapter 4 will introduce our ap- proach for 3D localization and mapping using one 2D LIDAR while chapter 5 will show detailed results. The last chapter is going to conclude this thesis and point out future pos- sible research directions.

2

**CHAPTER 2**

**Related Work**

## T

^{HE}problem of modeling physical structures has been long studied in different research areas as geoscience (Schulz, 2007), photogrammetry or computer vi- sion. Recently mapping using LIDARs has become popular in robotics, pop- ular to the extend that nowadays most robots that are intended to move in either indoor or outdoor environments use one. Often no prior map is given, so the robot needs to build one in order to navigate in the environment and interact with it.

**2.1. Mapping**

First work on autonomous map building using a grid based approach was done by (Elfes, 1987) who proposed using occupancy grid maps for mapping. Due to limits of sonars as range sensors and the lack of computational power at this time his maps did not extend the size of a few thousand grid cells. The work on occupancy grids was later extended to 3D using Stereo vision by (Martin & Moravec, 1996). Various versions of grid based mapping are presently widely used because they are intuitive to use and easy to implement. Higher level features like loop closing can only be achieved with extra effort.

Feature based approaches extract, like the name suggests, features from the raw scan and then keep track of them and the robots location by using an Extended Kalman Filter (EKF). First described by (Cheeseman & Smith, 1986) EKF based SLAM allows loop closure, but introduces a data association problem and has to deal with the burden of the quadratic growth of the covariance matrix used by the EKF. Much work has been done and is done in this area since the seminal paper. (Thrun et al., 2002) introduced an Information Filter based (IF) technique that addresses this issue while (Burgard et al., 1999) uses a hybrid

2.2 MAPPING IN 3D

approach generating local submaps using occupancy grids and then using Expectation Maximization (EM) Algorithm to form the global maps out of the submaps.

Direct methods use the raw measurements returned by the sensor to estimate the robots pose and represent the map. To find the location of the mobile robot the spatial con- straints between two consequent scans are estimated. Assuming that parts of the two scans show the same environment, algorithms like the Iterative Closest Point Algorithm (ICP) can be used to match the scans. ICP was introduced by (Besl & McKay, Besl & McKay) and is heavily used in 2D as well as 3D. Various improvements to this algorithm have been proposed, (Rusinkiewicz & Levoy, 2001) gives an excellent summary describing the effects on performance and accuracy of the different variations. The map representation is typical a set of points, or a list of scans together with the corresponding robot pose in which the scan was taken. Parts of this thesis work use direct methods to estimate the robots pose and to describe the map.

**2.2. Mapping in 3D**

While most work mentioned before was done in 2D, the methods used can be ex- tended to the three dimensional world. 3D EKF based techniques are often used in visual methods while range data based ones often use direct or gridmap based approaches.

Few sensors exist that can capture 3D data of its environment - one kind of these sensors are Time of Flight (TOF) cameras which use an array of flashing IR LEDs to get depth information. Their range is limited to a few meters, and the data returned is rather noisy.

Several techniques for acquiring three-dimensional data using 2D range scanners mounted on mobile robots have been proposed. One approach is to mount two scanners with differ- ent orientations as done by (Thrun et al., 2000) and (Thrun et al., 2003) another one to use one scanner and pan, tilt or rotate it (Harrison & Newman, 2008).

(Wulf & Wagner, 2003) shows the influence of different ways of tilting/rotating one scanner in space on the returned data. Drawback of these methods is that they require ex- tra effort to precisely synchronize the tilting/rotating actuator with the scanner in order to determine the orientation in which each scan was taken. In case the robot is moving during the scanning the robots trajectory also needs to be taken into account. Several robotic sys- tems avoid that problem by stopping for the the scanning. (Nuechter et al., 2005) and (Ryde

4

2.2 MAPPING IN 3D

& Hu, 2007) use this ’stop-and-go’ method for capturing data. Additional sensors as an Odometer or an IMU can be used to estimate the path traveled during the scan. (Harrison

& Newman, 2008) describes in detail methods for the synchronization of scanner/tilting platform, as well as optimisation techniques using prior knowledge about the structure of the environment (for example: walls are known to be vertical) to allow capturing more accurate 3D information using a tilting scanner under general vehicle motion.

To capture 3D data with two LIDARs one is oriented with its scanning plane parallel to the plane in which the robot moves, while the other one is pointing towards the objects of interest having another orientation than the first one. Since the extrinsic parameters be- tween the two scanners are fixed one can be used to determine the robots position in 2D assuming movement only in two dimensions, as the other ’sweeps’ over the environment while passing thus generating the 3D data. (Frueh & Zakhor, 2004) used this approach to generate a city scale 3D model using 2 laser scanners mounted on a car while driving through the city under normal traffic conditions. These type of approaches have the draw- back that the 3D information is captured at the moment the robot is at a location, not prior to that therefore the 3D data cant be used for navigation or obstacle avoidance purposes.

**CHAPTER 3**

**Foundations**

## T

^{HIS}chapter will introduce basic methods that are applied within this thesis.

After a short description of the main sensor utilized for this work, techniques that are used to process raw LIDAR data are introduced. Then the ICP algo- rithm will be discussed which is employed to match two consecutive scans.

Finally a method to find the extrinsic parameters between a camera and a laser scanner will be introduced.

**3.1. LIDAR**

LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) is the notation for a class of optical sensors that utilize light to measure distance to a remote target. While large high energy versions of this technology are used in meteorology and astrophysics there is a large number of small, portable sensing devices that can be used in industrial applications, or mounted on mobile robots. We will introduce the latter type of this class of sensors.

(a) Hokuyo laser scanner (b) Sick LMS 291 (c) SICK S200

**Figure 3.1.** Examples of various LIDAR sensors

3.1 LIDAR

A LIDAR device sends out a focused beam of light and measures the properties of the scattered light returned by an object to the scanner. The properties of the returned light, like time difference between sending out the beam and its return or phase shift, are then used to estimate the distance to the target. For the sensors used in mobile robotics the light source used is an eye-safe, invisible laser. To allow sensing the distance in more than one direction a rotating mirror is used to sweep the beam in a 2D plane over the environment.

Figure 3.1 shows various models of laser range finders.

One typical characteristic for these sensors is a maximum range between 4 and 100
meters with an accuracy of a few centimeters or below. The amount of data points recorded
varies depending on the model within a range of 1000 to 15000 measurements/second. The
angular spacing between the measurements within the scanning plane ranges from 1^{◦}to
0.25^{◦}.

Figure 3.1(a) shows a Hokuyo LIDAR which has a maximum range of 4 meters, an angular resolution of 360/1024 degree and an opening angle of 240 deg. It is one of the smallest rangefinders on the market with a 4x4 centimeter footprint, a height of 7 cen- timeters and a weight of 160 grams. Figure 3.1(b) shows the widely used SICK LMS 291.

Experiments in this thesis were performed using this sensor. Figure 3.1(c) shows a SICK S200.

0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400

100 150 200 250 300 350 400 450 500 550

(a) raw scan data with the range in centimeters on the vertical axis and the beam index (equivalent to 0.5 deg) on the horizontal axis

−1500 −100 −50 0 50 100 150 200 250 300

50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 450 500

(b) same scan as in (a) converted to carthesisan co- ordinates. Both axis in centimeters.

**Figure 3.2.** Example of scans taken with a SICK LMS 291.

3.2 RAW SCAN PROCESSING

**3.2. Raw Scan Processing**

LIDAR measurements return the distance to an object together with the angle under
which the measurement was made. This corresponds to a two-dimensional polar coordi-
nate system where a point is defined by (φi, dist_{i}). These coordinates can easily be trans-
ferred to a Cartesian coordinate system (xi, y_{i}).

To educe higher level information from a scan it is desirable to group the points to seg- ments. While distance criteria in polar or cartesian coordinates allow basic segmentation, line segmentation is particularly helpful since in man-made environments most structures tend to have planar surfaces which are represented as lines in a scan.

**3.2.1. Linear Least Square Line fitting**

Given a set of n points defined by pairs (xi, y_{i}) of Cartesian coordinates the line that
minimizes the squared distance to all points can be calculated in a closed form

tan 2ϕ = −2 ∑i( ¯x− x_{i})( ¯y− y_{i})

∑i[( ¯y− y_{i})^{2}− ( ¯x − x_{i})^{2}] (3.1)

r= ¯xcos(ϕ) + ¯ysin(ϕ) (3.2)

where ( ¯x, ¯y) denotes the centroid of all points given by ¯x = ∑ix_{i}and ¯y = ∑iy_{i}. ϕ is the angle
of the normal and r the normal distance to the origin. Unfortunately a scan or even a part
of an already segmented scan can be composed of multiple lines. To deal with this issue
the following algorithm is applied.

**3.2.2. Line splitting**

The basic idea of the ’split and merge’ algorithm is to recursively subdivide the point set into segments that can be better approximated by a line. Given a segment that should be split into lines, a line is fit through all points using Equations 3.1 and 3.2. Then the point with the maximum distance to the line is calculated. If the distance is below a defined threshold the fitted line is returned. Otherwise a new line defined by the first and last point in the set is defined. The point with the largest distance to this line is found and selected as splitting point, separating the point set into one subset consisting of all points from the first point to the splitting point (including) and a second subset containing the rest of the points.

8

3.2 RAW SCAN PROCESSING

**A**

**B**
**C**

(a) First step of the line splitting

**A**

**B**
**C**

**E**

(b) Two Lines were found

**Figure 3.3.** First the thick line in (a) is calculated using Equations 3.1 and 3.2. Point
Cis found as point with the largest normal distance to the line. The distance is
above a defined treshold, so a new line AB is defined and the point with the largest
distance is found again (C). The pointset is splitted into two sets. Again lines are
fitted through both sets using the Linear Least Square method. The distance of E
to the fitted line is below the defined treshold, as well as all points of the second
set are within the treshold. Two lines were found.

The algorithm is performed subsequently on the subsets until no splitting occurs, meaning that all points are located within a certain threshold to a line. Figure 3.3 illus- trates the procedure and ListingAlgorithm 1 summarizes the line splitting algorithm.

**Algorithm 1**Line splitting algorithm

1: given a set of n points (xi, y_{i})

2: calculate line LLSq(r, ϕ) using Equations 3.1, 3.2

3: find max distance dLSqline LLSq- point (xi, y_{i})

4: **if**distance dLSq>**threshold then**

5: define line by first and last point of the set LFL
6: find point psplitwith max distance from line LFL
7: split set into p1...p_{split}, p(split+1)...p_{n}

8: start algorithm with both new pointsets

9: **end if**

10: **return** all lines ← line

3.3 ITERATIVE CLOSEST POINT (ICP) ALGORITHM

**3.3. Iterative Closest Point (ICP) Algorithm**

This algorithm was proposed by (Besl & McKay, Besl & McKay) to match two point
sets. It aims to find the transformation T = (T, R) from a point set B = {p^{B}_{i}...p^{B}_{n}} to another
set A = {p^{A}_{i}...p^{A}_{m}}. The ICP algorithm uses the raw data without the need to extract corre-
sponding features which makes it robust and easy to use. While in this thesis the algorithm
is employed in 2D it works as well in 3D or higher dimensional data.

First for each point p^{A}in the current point set A the closest point p^{B}from the point set
Bis computed. This is a computationally demanding step requiring N comparisons with
Mpoints. Where the point set A consists of N points and B of M. Various strategies can be
applied like kD-trees or sub sampling to speed up this step.

Given the two point sets A and B we consider the points p^{A}_{i} and p^{B}_{i} as a correspond-
ing pair. We then aim to find the rotation and translation T = (R, T ) that minimizes the
following function

e(R, T ) := 1 N

N i=1

### ∑

k p^{B}_{i} − (Rp^{A}_{i} + T ) k^{2} (3.3)
Minimizing this function for the 2D case leads to the following closed form solution
for T = (ϕ, Tx, T_{y}). This solution follows (Lu & Milios, 1997).

ϕ = arctanΣ_{A}_{y}_{B}_{x}− Σ_{A}_{x}_{B}_{y}
ΣAxBx+ ΣAyBy

T_{x} = p^{A}^{x}− (p^{B}^{x}cos ϕ − p^{B}^{y}sin ϕ) (3.4)
T_{y} = p^{B}^{y}− (p^{A}^{x}cos ϕ + p^{A}^{y}cos ϕ)

where

p^{A}^{x}= 1
N

N i=1

### ∑

p^{A}_{i}^{x}, p^{A}^{y}= 1
N

N i=1

### ∑

p^{A}_{i}^{y}, p^{B}^{x}= 1
N

N i=1

### ∑

p^{B}_{i}^{x}, p^{B}^{y}= 1
N

N i=1

### ∑

p^{B}_{i}^{y}
and

ΣAyBx=

N i=1

### ∑

(p^{A}_{i}^{y}− p^{A}^{y})(p^{B}_{i}^{x}− p^{B}^{x}) , ΣAxBy=

N i=1

### ∑

(p^{A}_{i}^{x}− p^{A}^{x})(p^{B}_{i}^{y}− p^{B}^{y})

Σ_{A}_{x}_{B}_{x}=

N

### ∑

i=1

(p^{A}_{i}^{x}− p^{A}^{x})(p^{B}_{i}^{x}− p^{B}^{x}) , Σ_{A}_{y}_{B}_{y}=

N

### ∑

i=1

(p^{A}_{i}^{y}− p^{A}^{y})(p^{B}_{i}^{y}− p^{B}^{y}).

10

3.3 ITERATIVE CLOSEST POINT (ICP) ALGORITHM

p^{A}_{i}^{x}denotes the x-coordinate if the ith point from set A while p^{B}_{i}^{y}denotes the y-coordinate
if the ith point from set B.

Different ways exists to calculate T, as they all minimize equation 3.3. (Besl & McKay, Besl & McKay) gave a formal proof that the ICP algorithm converges for a local optimum.

It is also mentioned that a good initial condition increases the chance that the algorithm
converges to the global optimum. We will discuss how we get a good initial guess in
**Section ??.**

The complete ICP algorithm is summarized in Algorithm 2

**Algorithm 2**Iterative Closest Point algorithm (ICP)

1: given two pointsets A = {p^{A}_{1}...p^{A}_{n}} and B = {p^{B}_{1}...p^{B}_{m}}

2: T ← 0

3: score ← ∞

4: **whilescore > iterationThreshold & iterations < maxIterations do**

5: transform A using ∆T

6: find n closest point pairs < p^{A}_{i}, p^{B}_{j} >

7: calculate ∆T using 3.4

8: T ← T + ∆T

9: calculate score as f (∆T)

10: iterations ++

11: **end while**

12: **return** Transformation T

**3.3.1. Improvements over the Naive Implementation**

Various improvements and variants of this algorithm have been proposed since the seminal paper. They increase the robustness as well as the speed of ICP. (Rusinkiewicz

& Levoy, 2001) gives an excellent summary over various possible changes to the naive implementation. We will introduce the ones relevant to our 2D ICP implementation.

**Spatially equal point selection.** The idea behind this variation is that for each Ob-
ject within the field of view of the laser scanner the number of points used for matching the
scans should be related to the size of the object, not to the distance between the LIDAR and
the object. If all points are used and they are weighted the same, a small object very close
to the scanner might dominate the matching process simply because of the high number of
measurements from this object.

3.4 CLUSTERING

To avoid this issue a minimum (euclidean) distance between points is defined. Points that are to close are removed from the point set. This procedure is performed before the finding of the closest-point-pairs on one of the point sets.

**Outlier removal.** Newly detected objects and erroneous measurements tend to oc-
cur at positions that are spatially far from previous measurements, while new measure-
ments of already observed objects should be near to the previous measurements. Making
use of this information the matching result can be improved by refusing pairs with a dis-
tance over a certain threshold. The distance used was the maximum distance possible
between two scans which was derived from the robots maximum speed.

**Further improvements.** Other strategies include reduction of the point sets by ran-
domly sub sampling or using other criteria to choose which points to use. This is not
necessary in the 2D case since the number of points is low compared to the typical 3D case.

The weighting of pairs is another possible improvement over the naive implementation.

Possible criteria for the weighting is the point to point distance or the direction of the link in relation to the directions to the neighbouring points within the point sets.

**3.4. Clustering**

By clustering or cluster analysis we mean to divide a a set of observations into several subsets. Here it is not known how many clusters exist or if one exists at all, therefore methods like k-means which require prior knowledge about the number of subsets are not suitable.

We use a method similar to the QT (Quality Threshold) algorithm. Instead of defining the number of expected clusters we define a distance threshold within which all points of a cluster should be. For each point we build a candidate cluster by adding the closest point, then the next closest and so on until the next point added would exceed the threshold. Then the cluster with most points is saved as first true cluster. After all points from this cluster are removed from the point set the procedure is repeated until all points are assigned to clusters.

Since the data we work on is likely to have outliers and we are only interested in agglomerations of points - we do not aim to assign every piont to a cluster - we stop the algorithm once the number of data points in a new cluster falls below a certain threshold.

12

3.5 LIDAR CALIBRATION

**3.5. LIDAR calibration**

n this section a method to calibrate the LIDARs pose is introduced. By calibration we mean to seek the LIDARs position and orientation in 3D. Finding this position and location only using its own data is hard, since the data returned is sparse and only taken within a 2D plane.

A two step method that utilizes an additional camera is proposed. In the first step the extrinsic parameters between the camera and LIDAR are estimated. The second step finds the cameras position with respect to a placed calibration board. Combining both results allows to estimate the LIDARs pose in 3D.

Figure 3.4 summarizes the approach.

**Figure 3.4.** Overview of the calibration procedure. First the extrinsic parameters
between camera and LIDAR are estimated. Then the camera is located using a
checkerboard. Finally the LIDARs pose is found by combining the two previous
results.

**3.5.1. Extrinsic Camera - LIDAR calibration**

To fuse the data of two sensors the extrinsic parameters between them need to be known. Here we introduce a calibration method to estimate these parameters between a LIDAR and a camera. Several papers address this calibration problem, but only few ad- dress the problem using a 2D laser scanner with beams that are invisible to the camera.

While (Pless & Zhang, 2004) use the distance between the laser points and the plane of a calibration object visible in the camera (Zhao et al., 2007) proposed the use of multiple

3.5 LIDAR CALIBRATION

video streams and a 3D model built from LIDAR data in which manually identified fea- tures visible in both data sets are used to to perform calibration. The calibration approach described here follows the work of (Li & Liu, 2007) which establishes constraints between lines visible in the camera image and points in the laser scan for calibration purposes.

First we assume that the camera itself is calibrated, meaning its intrinsic parameters
are known and the pictures used are corrected. A pinhole camera can be described by a
projection from the world coordinates P = [X,Y, Z]^{T} to the image coordinates p = [u, v]^{T}.
This can be represented as follows

p∼ K(RP + T ) (3.5)

where K is the intrinsic camera matrix, R is an orthonormal 3x3 matrix representing the cameras orientation and T a vector representing the cameras position.

All laser points are recorded in a plane. A laser coordinate system is defined with its origin in the LIDAR’s center - and without loss of generality the scan plane is defined as Y = 0. Let PLbe a point in the laser coordinate system, so the transformation between the camera and laser coordinate system can be described as follows

P_{L}= ΦP + t (3.6)

where Φ is a 3x3 matrix representing the cameras orientation relative to the lasers orientation and t a vector representing their relative spatial position. Using Equation 3.5 and 3.6 a point in the Laser coordinate system can be projected into the image plane.

Possible features for calibration would be points, lines and planes. Different features introduce different constraints between camera and laser data. Point features would lead to the strongest constraints, but since the light of the LIDAR is not visible in the camera image it is less feasible to use point features.

Line features are easily detectable in the camera image. In LIDAR data changes in depth are easily detectable. The edges of a calibration board are therefore visible as lines in the camera image and visible as depth changes in the LIDAR data. The calibration target is designed as a rectangular triangle as shown in Figure 3.7. The rectangular shape gives the strongest constraints (Li & Liu, 2007).

Several poses of the checkerboard visible in both sensors are recorded. After identify- ing the edges AB and AC from the calibration target as lines ab and ac in the cameras image

14

3.5 LIDAR CALIBRATION

**A**

**B**

**C**
**E**

**F**
Calibration
Target

**Figure 3.5.** Calibration target intersecting with laser slice plane. Points E and F
are visible in the scan and known to lie on the lines AB respectively AC which are
visible in the camera.

0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5

−1.5

−1

−0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2

(a) A scan with the points corresponding to the calibra- tion boards edges marked in red circles

(b) A camera image with lines marked and the two laser points projected to the image us- ing the initial guess for Φ and t. The object in the left lower corner of the camera image is the LIDAR sensor

**Figure 3.6.** Sample pair of camera image and laser scan used for calibration

plane we find the points E and F in the laser scan and project them to the camera plane as eand f using Equation 3.5 and 3.6. Figure 3.6 shows one pair of image and scan used for calibration. The distance between a point e and a line ab is defined by

dist(e, ab) =keb^{→}×ab^{→} k
k

→

abk

. (3.7)

Using the distance between the lines and the projected points we can define the fol- lowing error function that we minimize in order to find Φ and t.

3.5 LIDAR CALIBRATION

min (N

i=1

### ∑

(dist(e_{i}, a_{i}b_{i}) + dist( f_{i}, a_{i}c_{i}))^{2}
)

. (3.8)

Nis the number of corresponding camera images and laser scans. In order to calculate Φand t we solve the nonlinear optimization problem using the Levenberg-Marquard al- gorithm. Algorithm 3 summarizes the proposed calibration method. Figure 3.7 shows the calibration results by projecting the Laser data onto the image.

**Algorithm 3**Extrinsic Camera LIDAR calibration

1: given N measurement pairs from camera and LIDAR

2: set initial Φ and t by estimation or rough measurement

3: for each pair detected the two intersection points of the laser slice plane with the cali- bration targets edges and transform them to the cameras image plane

4: detect projections of the calibration targets edges to the image plane

5: calculate Φ and t by minimizing Equation 3.8 using the Levenberg-Marquard method

6: **return Φ**and t

**Figure 3.7.** The camera image after the calibration procedure with the laser data
projected on the image. The position of the laser scanner is visible in the lower left
corner. The points projected on the authors head appear since the head is occluding
the wall behind. The points actually hit the wall behind the head.

16

3.5 LIDAR CALIBRATION

**3.5.2. Calibrating the LIDAR’s position**

Estimating the LIDARs’ position in space is a difficult task since the data returned from the sensor is relatively sparse. Calibration objects would need to be large bulky ob- jects. To our best knowledge no method has been published that only uses the LIDAR data to uniquely calibrate the LIDARs position in 3D space. To avoid the hard problem of directly calibrating the LIDAR, we propose to utilize the camera for the calibration proce- dure.

In an intermediate step a checkerboard is used as calibration object to find the cameras position in space. By placing the checkerboard on a well defined location like the ground preferable with one orientation parallel to the an edge of the cameras image plane the pa- rameters of interest (height, tilt and roll angle) can be estimated. Given the camera position and orientation is found the results of the camera-LIDAR calibration procedure introduced in the previous section can be used to estimate the LIDAR’s position in space.

Figure 3.8(a) shows an example of a picture from a checkerboard with axis found.

Figure 3.8(b) shows the estimated camera pose.

(a) Calibration pattern is placed on the ground to calibrate the LIDAR’s pose with respect to the ground.

(b) Calibration results for the camera. Posi- tion 1 marks the camera position, z-axis is the hight above ground. All units in millimeter.

**Figure 3.8.** Calibrating camera with respect to the ground

**CHAPTER 4**

**3D Localization and Mapping using one 2D LIDAR**

## I

^{N}this chapter we will describe our approach to perform 3D mapping and localiza- tion using one 2D LIDAR. First, three assumptions for this approach are formulated and discussed. Then a two-step localization strategy is described in detail in two variants. One allows to perform the method online, the second one includes an offline optimization step.

**4.1. Assumptions**

The Assumptions made will be described and justified first, and later on, after describ- ing our approach, we will discuss up to which extend they can be attenuated or violated without breaking the system.

ASSUMPTION1. The robot is moving on flat ground which is visible in the scan.

For the case of a mobile robot operating in indoor environments, the first part of the assumption will hold in most cases. Man-made buildings generally tend to have a flat floor.

Robots moving are under the influence of gravity so they will move within that floor-plane.

Typicall wheeled robots are not able to climb stairs - so they stay on the ground. In urban environments where the robot moves on streets the assumption will locally hold in many cases, while downward or upward slopes of the street might violate it. For any off-road case this assumption will most likely not hold.

The second part of the assumption - that the floor is visible in the scan - can be easily achieved by mounting the sensor in that way on the robot. Tilting the LIDARs sensing plane sufficiently away from the direction of motion towards the floor will make sure the

4.1 ASSUMPTIONS

floor is visible in the scan. Sufficiently meaning that after expected changes in the robots pitch and roll angle due the robots suspension or its elastic structure the floor is still visible.

ASSUMPTION2. The height of the Laser scanner is known.

Given an initial calibration that reveals the sensors position in relation to a defined starting point that is located on the floor (as described in Section 3.5.2) the robots initial height is known. Unless in rough outdoor terrains where a robot is likely to move over uneven terrain a wheeled indoor robot is unlikely to change its height. For urban environ- ments with the sensor on a car like robot the assumption will hold on flat terrain driving at constant speed. Rapid changes of speed are likely to lead to small height changes due to the suspension. These changes are bounded and could be estimated given a sophisticated motion model. For a legged robot the height is likely to change during walking, but given the control input together with the mechanical configuration it is possible to estimate the sensors height for each time.

ASSUMPTION3. The environment has sufficient vertical structures.

This assumption is reasonable within most man-made structures as well as in urban areas since they are also man-made. Buildings tend to have vertical walls, supporting pillars, power poles or just poles for traffic signs are mostly vertical. Looking at a smaller scale in buildings we can also find many vertical structures - chairs or tables have vertical poles, closets or storage racks have vertical parts. Even trunks of a trees in nature tend to be vertical. In most environments a robot might operate in, this assumption will hold, only outdoor terrains moderately covered with vegetation will violate this assumption.

The meaning of sufficient will be explained later in detail. To illustrate, one defined, vertical, wall like structure properly visible from the scanner would be sufficient. Two visible vertical poles together with the ground (following Assumption 1) would also be sufficient.

4.2 ESTIMATING THE ORIENTATION

**4.2. Estimating the Orientation**

Given the previously made assumptions together with an initial calibration, the seg- ment of one LIDAR scan, that represents the ground, can be found and its characteristics allow to estimate the orientation of the LIDAR sensor with respect to the floor.

**4.2.1. Identifying the ground line**

Assuming the floor is flat, all scan points representing the ground will lie on a line.

Applying the methods described Section 3.2 the scan is reduced to a set of lines represented
by n pairs (ϕi, r_{i}) where ϕ is the angle of the normal and r is the normal distance of the line
to the origin.

With the use of Assumption 1 and 2 the parameters of the line representing the ground solely depend on the LIDARs pitch and roll angle. The robots design can give bounds on these two angles. Using these thresholds together with the initial calibration the line representing the floor can be estimated.

The algorithm to find the ground line out of all line segments is listed as Algorithm 4.

**Algorithm 4**ground line selection

1: score ← −1

2: **for**all line segments (ri, ϕi**) in scan do**

3: **if r**iis within distanceBounds & ϕi**is within orientationBounds then**

4: **ifprevious ground line exists then**

5: distance score ← f (ri, r_{prev})

6: orientation score ← f (ϕi, ϕprev)

7: **else**

8: distance score ← f (ri, r_{expected})

9: orientation score ← f (ϕi, ϕ_{expected})

10: **end if**

11: **ifdistance score + orientation score > score then**

12: score ← distance score + orientation score

13: ground line ← [ri, ϕi]

14: **end if**

15: **end if**

16: **end for**

17: **ifscore = −1 then**

18: **return** -1

19: **else**

20: **return** groundline (rGL, ϕGL)

21: **end if**

20

4.2 ESTIMATING THE ORIENTATION

Where (rexpected, φexpected) are the values obtained from the initial calibration. Figure 4.1 shows an example scan segmented with the result of a groundline detection.

−1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

−6

−4

−2 0 2 4 6

**Figure 4.1.** Segmented scan with detected line in gray and groundline estimate
marked as a thick black line. Units on both axis in meters.

**4.2.2. Selection Issues**

Following the first assumption that the floor is visible in the scan the ground line can be etimated. Depending on the robots assembly, the bounds within the line is expected can be very tight. Experiments showed that often only one candidate exists within the bounds, making the selection process robust.

One possible issue is that no groundline exists at all. Even it violates the first assump- tion, the following localization steps can still be performed using the previous estimates instead of current ones. It clearly decreases the accuracy of the localization, but allows to

4.2 ESTIMATING THE ORIENTATION

deal with periods without a detectable groundline. The case that there is no groundline can happen when the robot is moving towards a long wall with a moving direction normal to the wall. In all experiments concluded this happened only once.

Another possible approach is to keep all possible groundlines for each scan storing them all as valid hypotheses, and later do an offline optimization step picking the candi- date for each scan that fits best in the groundplane fitted through all groundlines.

**4.2.3. Calculating Pitch and Roll**

A laser rangefinder measures the distance to a number of points. All the vectors from the center of the scanner to the measured point lie within a plane. Following Assumption 1 the ground is flat and is therefor also a plane. The intersection of two non-parallel planes is a line - here this line is exactly the groundline identified in the previous step. Given the parameters of this intersecting line, as well as the height of the scanner the orientation of the scanning plane can be calculated.

### Ground plane Scanning plane

### Groundline

### y x z

**Figure 4.2.** Pitch and roll angles

Let h be the height of the scanner above ground, r the normal distance between the intersecting line of the ground plane and the scanning plane and ϕ the orientation of the

22

4.3 ESTIMATING THE ROBOT MOTION

intersecting line. Using fundamental geometry we can see from Figure 4.2 that the pitch angle θ is

θ =π

2− cos^{−1} h
r

(4.1) the roll angle φ is:

φ = arctan sin θ tan ϕ

(4.2)

**4.3. Estimating the Robot Motion**

In the previous section we showed how roll and pitch orientations of the LIDAR can be estimated using assumptions about the environment. The LIDARs full pose is defined by 6 degrees of freedom (DOF) - with roll, pitch and height 3 out of these 6 are known. In this section we describe how we estimate the missing 3 parameters.

**4.3.1. Scan Projection**

Here we introduce two local coordinate systems. Let the robot’s coordinate system be
defined by three vectors: one normal to the ground plane, another is the projection of the
0^{◦}beam of the LIDAR on the ground plane and the third is normal to the previous two
with its direction chosen so a that a right-handed or positive coordinate system is formed.

The origin is chosen to be in the center of the laser rangefinder.

The second coordinate system is the LIDAR’s own coordinate system, defined by a
vector in the zero degree beam direction, one in the 90^{◦}direction and a third one that is
normal to the previous two also forming a right-hand coordinate system.

The x axis is defined in both by the forward (0^{◦}) beam of the scanner while the z axis
is defined in the robots coordinate system by the normal of the ground plane, and in the
LIDARS coordinate system by the vector normal to the scanning plane. The rotation be-
tween the two coordinate systems can be defined by the previously calculated pitch and
roll angles so that for θ = 0^{◦}and φ = 0^{◦}the two coordinate systems coincide.

A rotational matrix is defined that projects each point in the LIDAR’s coordinate sys- tem pito the xy plane of the robots coordinate system

p^{xy}_{i} = R · p_{i} (4.3)

4.3 ESTIMATING THE ROBOT MOTION

where R is composed from Rx(θ ) · Ry(φ )and p^{xy}_{i} denotes a projected point. The new
projected scan is parallel to the floor the robot is moving on. Vertical structures appear
in the same x-y location independent of the height at which the scanner actually mea-
sured them. This allows to adopt known techniques to estimate the displacement within
the groundplane between two consecutive scans given by the parameters x, y and ψ. The
displacement of the two scans is equivalent to the robots movement.

**4.3.2. Scan Matching Challenges**

To estimate the displacement of two consecutive, projected scans the Iterative Closest Point algorithm (ICP) which was introduced in Section 3.3 is used. While the naive imple- mentation works reasonably good on scans that are captured within the same plane in a static environment, the projected data of a tilted LIDAR introduces several challenges.

First the points representing the ground need to be removed from both point sets used for matching. This is done by calculating the line-point distance for each point to the ground line and rejecting the ones below a certain threshold. Removing these points reduces the number of points available for matching, but is necessary for the matching procedure.

Tilting the LIDAR towards the ground reduces the maximum range in the scanners x- direction. While a commonly used SICK LMS 291 has 81 meters maximum range, the range in x-direction decreases down to a few meters when tilting the rangefinder. This makes it harder to estimate the forward movement of the robot. Figure 4.3 shows the differences between a horizontal and tilted scan that is reprojected of a hallway.

A scanner in horizontal orientation senses structures up to its maximum range within the full field of view which allows good matching, a tilted LIDAR sees less objects due the reduced forward range.

Strong features for estimating rotation and displacement in y-direction are usually available for a tilted scanner, while there is a lack of features that allow to estimate the forward movement. For example a long hallway without doors leads after removal of the groundpoints to two lines of points on both sides of the robot which allow excellent estimation of y and ψ but do not give any constraints on the forward direction.

24

4.3 ESTIMATING THE ROBOT MOTION

0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16

−2

−1.5

−1

−0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2

(a) horizontal scan of a hallway

0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5 4 4.5 5

−2

−1.5

−1

−0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2

(b) The projected scan of the same scene captured with LIDAR tilted 20 degree towards the ground.

Red points belong to the ground and are removed before matching.

**Figure 4.3.** Example of a horizontal and projected scan. After removing the points
representing the ground in the tilted scan (right figure, red points) less features in
moving direction of the robot are available.

Vertical structures in two tilted scans will allow proper matching, non-vertical struc- tures might degrade the result and lead to ambiguities. Horizontal objects in indoor envi- ronments like tables or low walls outdoor will have constant projected locations for every point on their horizontal surface. Using them for matching would lead to a false result.

Given enough vertical structures as postulated in Assumption 3 this issue can be avoided.

The reduced number of points in each scan and few features that establish constraints in moving direction together with the ambiguities introduced by non vertical structures can decrease the accuracy of ICP results. To deal with these issues, a good initial guess for the ICP algorithm is needed. To find this good initial guess a constant velocity motion model is used as described in the next section.

4.3 ESTIMATING THE ROBOT MOTION

**4.3.3. Constant Velocity Motion Model**

To find a good initial condition for the scan matching procedure, we use the previous estimates for the robots velocity to project where the robot might be located at the time the next scan is taken.

v=

Tx

dtp

T_{y}
dtp

ϕ dtp

T_{i}= v · dt_{n}

T = (ϕ, Tx, T_{y})is the result of the previous matching. dtpis the time difference between
the two previous scans used for matching and Tiis the initial guess for the next matching.

dt_{n}is the time difference between the current and previous scan.

This simple approach assumes that the velocity is changing at relatively slow rates.

Slow meaning that the changes between two consecutive scans are small, which is a rea- sonable assumption.

**4.3.4. Sampling based Approach**

As described in Section 3.3, ICP requires a good initial guess to work since it is prone to converge towards local minima. Ambiguities in the scan data can introduce several local minima which might lead ICP to give an incorrect matching result. To make the approach more robust to outliers and to aventually cover ambiguities, the ICP algorithm is performed several times with the same two scans, but using different initial conditions.

Figure 4.4 shows an example of 200 initial conditions where all results clustering to- wards one maxima (red dots). In Figure 4.5 also 200 initial conditions are displayed, but the results in red agglomerate around various maxima. Having sufficient vertical structures will make sure that at least one of these clusters corresponds to the correct result. To find the actual clusters from the set of the ICP results, the algorithm described in Section 3.4 is used.

When the environment is sufficiently structured and has few ambiguities, all initial guesses tend to converge towards the same result. If the environment is not sufficiently structured, has ambiguities or the two scans overlap only in small regions, multiple clusters are likely to occur. In case of multiple solutions these solutions can be used to estimate the uncertainty of the localization, or they can be saved as mulitple hpotheses and later an

26

4.3 ESTIMATING THE ROBOT MOTION

**Figure 4.4.** Sampling based results with no ambiguities. The black points corre-
spond to initial guesses, the red ones are the results and the green circle with cross
is the center of the clustering result

**Figure 4.5.** Sampling based results with ambiguities. The black points correspond
to initial guesses, the red ones are the results and the green circle with cross is the
center of the clustering result. 3 possible solutions can be identified.

offline optimization process tries to find the best solution of each timestep. The multiple hypotheses approach will be discussed in section 6.2.

4.4 UNCERTAINTY MODELING

**4.4. Uncertainty Modeling**

A particle filter based approach is choosen to keep track of the uncertainty over the scan matching procedure. A set of n particles each consisting of a possible robots pose is initialized at the starting position. For each two consecuitive scans the ICP algorithm is used to match the scans. The algorithm is initialized m times, with different, uniformly distributed initial conditions. For each of the n particles, one of the ICP results is randomly choosen and applied for each matching step. Here n = 10,000 particles were used with m = 100 ICP runs.

**Algorithm 5**uncertainty estimation

1: initialize n particles at the starting location

2: **for**all measurements zi**do**

3: match scans zi, zi−1mtimes with different initial conditions

4: **forevery Particle do**

5: randomly choose a matching result and move particle accordingly

6: **end for**

7: **end for**

This approach represents the uncertainties by a distribution of samples. It allows to track multimodal distributions that occur when having ambiguities in the sensor data.

**4.4.1. Uncertainty Comparison**

To evaluate the previously described approach, data was captured with a tilted LIDAR and a horizontally oriented one. Both laser scanners were mounted close to each other on the robot. As discussed in previous sections, we expect the performance for the tilted scanner is comparable for two parameters (Ty, ϕ) while the accuracy in moving direction (Tx) might be less compared to the results of the horizontal scanner.

Figure 4.6 shows an example of uncertainty measurements evaluated with the ap-
proach described in the previous section. The data was recorded in a long hallway. The
tilted scanner has few strong features to estimate dhe forward direction, while the horizon-
tal one can sense a wall in front and can therefore better estimate the movememnt in this
direction. After moving straigt for about 15 meters a 90^{◦}turn was made. The results are as
expected - in moving direction the uncertainty is larger for the tilted scanner.

28

4.4 UNCERTAINTY MODELING

0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

−4

−3

−2

−1 0 0.5

[meter]

[meter]

**Figure 4.6.** Uncertainty comparision between tilted and horizontal scan data. Each
set of points represents the particle distribution after 10 matchings applied to the
particles. The green point sets represent the horizontal scan, the black ones the
tilted. Each set consists of 10,000 particles.

**CHAPTER 5**

**Experimental Results**

## I

^{N}this chapter we will introduce results of our approach. First the robotic platform used and its configuration is introduced, followed by detailed results for two differ- ent indoor scenarios. The performance of our method will be evaluated and known issues will be discussed.

**5.1. Hardware**

For our experiments the existing PAL1 robot was modified. Originally based on an electric wheelchair a frame is mounted on this platform in order to allow to fix a LIDAR at a height of around 1.5 meters above ground with an exchangeable tilting angle. Figure 5.1 shows a the used robot. The sensor on top of the frame is a SICK LMS 291-S05 Laser- rangefinder. A second LIDAR of the same type is mounted on the robot with a horizontal orientation to get additional data for performance comparisons. The detailed character- istics of the rangefinder’s model used are listed in Table 5.1 (SICK AG Product Specifica- tions).

SICK LMS 291 Specifications field of view up to 180 deg scanning rate up to 75 Hz angular resolution 1, 0.5 or 0.25 deg maximum range 81 meters accuracy few centimeters dimensions 18.5 x 15.6 x 21.0 cm

weight 4.5 kg

supply 20W @ 24VDC

**Table 5.1.** Sick LMS 291 Specifications

5.1 HARDWARE

**Figure 5.1.** Modified PAL1 robot used for experiments. The top SICK LMS was the
main sensor used in the experiments. The horizontally oriented LIDAR in the front
was used to collect data for performance comparison.

A camera equipped with a wide angle lens is mounted close to the scanner with a for- ward orientation so that the field of view from both sensors partially overlap. The camera used is a Dragonfly2 from Point Gray Research Inc. It has a maximal resolution of 640x480 pixels and is using an IEEE1394a interface. All sensor data was recorded on a standard Laptop-PC running on Linux. The data from both SICK LMS were transferred using RS422 with a rate of 500 kbaud through a serial-to-USB converter.