Indoor Navigation for Environments with Repetitive Structures

New research looks into indoor navigation systems specifically designed for environments with repetitive structures, such as cruise ships, using Bluetooth low-energy (BLE) beacons without relying on GPS. The system incorporates a mobile application that uses these beacons to guide users accurately within buildings. The system optimises navigation through the use of pre-calculated routes, which minimises data storage requirements and enhances the application’s energy efficiency.

It system includes a sophisticated user interface that displays the route and updates navigation in real-time based on user movement and beacon signal reception. The implementation faced several challenges, particularly related to the synchronisation and real-time processing of beacon signals, which were addressed by optimising the beacon scanning process and the communication between system components.

The study lays the groundwork for future exploration and deployment of indoor navigation systems that leverage repetitive architectural features for enhanced navigation efficiency.

Indoor Navigation Using Bluetooth LE

There’s a new article from the Icontech International Journal of Surveys, Engineering, Technology on Indoor Position Routing (IPR) and Data Monitor Using Bluetooth Low Energy Technology by researchers at the Hasan Kalyoncu University, Institute of Science, Electrical & Electronics Engineering, Gaziantep, Turkey.

This article is different because it considers navigation as opposed to just locating. It explains the advantages of Bluetooth LE over WiFi and also compares with RFID:

Trilateration, Received Signal Strength Indicator (RSSI) and Decibel-milliwatts (dBmW) are explained and how these fit into locating position.

The article describes a system created for navigation that uses iBeacon sensor nodes, an Android device and app.

Read Determining Location Using Bluetooth Beacons

Read Using Beacons, iBeacons for Real-time Locating Systems (RTLS)

Beacon Based Navigation for the Visually Impaired

There’s a useful recent research paper by Basem AL-Madani, Farid Orujov, Rytis Maskeliūnas, Robertas Damaševičius,and Algimantas Venčkauskas on Fuzzy Logic Type-2 Based Wireless Indoor Localization System for Navigation of Visually Impaired People in Buildings.

The paper explores indoor location algorithms and implements a fingerprinting system using RSSI that achieves an average error of 0.43m.

The authors’ ‘fuzzy logic type-2’ system allows for complex environments such as buildings with glass/metal corridors. They comment that fingerprinting requires pre-configuration which is one of the main disadvantages of this method.

Holt iBeacon Trail

Holt Village has launched a new iBeacon Trail that uses the free ‘Explore North East Wales’ app from the Apple and Google app stores. It is one of twelve communities in North East Wales for which a system has been developed to find out more about the community and locations.

The project has been funded by the LEADER scheme which is a fund for rural areas in Wales to explore innovative new approaches and experimental technologies to tackle poverty, create jobs and drive sustainable economic development.

BlindSquare and Beacons

BlindSquare is a popular accessible GPS application developed for the blind and visually impaired. It describes the environment, announces points of interest and street intersections. BlindSquare also works with iBeacons.

An example of use of BlindSquare with beacons is Melbourne Zoo that allows people with visual impairments to get to parts of the zoo that are out of bounds to guide dogs.